Nord Stream AG has finished laying pipes for the Nord Stream 2 in Germany's exclusive economic zone, bringing the energy mega project one step step closer to completion, the DPA agency reported. The construction of the pipeline's 2.6 kilometre-long "German" part kicked-off earlier in December after Berlin green-lighted the plans.
The company is yet to lay the last kilometres of the pipeline, which will mostly be in Danish waters, with work expected to start in the middle of January 2021, DPA reports. The pipe-laying vessel "Fortuna" is assigned to the project with several other ships assisting it, including construction vessels "Baltic Explorer" and "Murman."
The US strongly opposes the 55 kilometre-long pipeline, as Washington claims Russia will use it as leverage against the EU, despite Moscow and Brussels insisting that it is purely an economic project. Still, the White House pressured the European states to drop the project in favour of buying more expensive LNG, either from the US or Israel, presumably to diversify the bloc's energy suppliers' diversity and security.
In order to prevent the construction of Nord Stream 2, Washington introduced sanctions against any company providing ships for construction purposes, or insuring such ships. This step already forced the Swiss Allseas company to withdraw from the project, but failed to stop it completely. Still, the US plans to introduce more sanctions against the pipeline in the near future. These plans faced strong condemnation not only in Moscow, but also in Europe.