Gas transportation via the Nord Stream - 2 pipeline should start before the end of 2019. This was stated by the head of the Austrian company OMV Rainer Seele. In his opinion, no delays in the implementation of the project are foreseen.
“We expect that the first gas will go through this pipeline until 00:00 on December 31. We did not abandon this plan, ”said Seele.
He also noted that at the moment 70% of the gas pipeline has been laid under the Baltic Sea.
However, in an interview with Bloomberg, the head of OMV stressed that the specific launch date of the project depends on the final permission from the Danish authorities.
“I do not see any delays from the Danish authorities. As I believe, we are still in budget and deadlines, ”he pointed out.
Earlier, a representative of the board of directors of Gazprom, Viktor Zubkov, indicated that the Russian side expects Copenhagen to give consent for the construction of the Nord Stream - 2 in October. At the same time, the actual term for laying pipes in the Danish sector will be a maximum of five weeks, said Alexey Miller, Chairman of the Board of Gazprom.
The Nord Stream 2 project consists of two gas pipeline threads with a total capacity of 55 billion cubic meters. meters of gas per year, which are placed through the exclusive economic zones and territorial waters of Russia, Finland, Sweden, Denmark and Germany, bypassing transit countries. The highway with a length of more than 1.2 thousand km is planned to be commissioned by the end of 2019. The cost of the project is about € 9.5 billion. In addition to Gazprom, five Western European energy companies - Engie, Shell, OMV, Uniper and Wintershall - are involved in its implementation. Their share of funding is 10%.
According to the OMV financial report, the Austrian oil and gas company has already allocated € 688 million from € 950 million.
“There are no big risks for the project”
According to Pavel Zavalny, the Chairman of the State Duma Committee on Energy, the deadlines for launching gas supply through the Nord Stream - 2 announced by the head of OMV should not change.
“The obstacles that can slow down the project’s implementation period are the permission to lay a gas pipeline in the Danish economic zone. But Nord Stream 2 is already there, plus the Danes have agreed to lay a gas pipeline from Norway to Poland, which runs in the same economic zone. It would be strange if they agreed on the laying of one pipeline, but did not agree on the laying of another. The deadline for making decisions is October, but if even Denmark does not give permission, then there is a third route - past its economic zone. In fact, it can be said that there are no big risks for the project, ”the parliamentarian stressed in an interview with RT.
He also noted that any other factors should also not hinder the implementation of the Nord Stream 2 AG project.
“If we take the legal basis, even those decisions made at the level of the European Parliament, the European Commission, from this point of view, are more concerned with new projects, and this project is underway. At the same time, the right to make decisions remains with Germany, and she, in fact, has given such a right, so there are no obstacles of a sanctions nature, ”Zavalny concluded.
As Anton Morozov, a member of the State Duma’s international affairs committee, added, the pipeline will be built as scheduled, primarily because European companies are interested in this.
“They need energy supplies at reasonable prices, it is necessary for them to develop their own economy, which, as is well known, is in a downturn in Europe,” the source said.
According to him, Europeans are aware of the economic benefits of the pipeline, so they do not pay attention to repeated statements by the United States about the alleged fall of the EU into dependence on Russia.
"Of course, the Americans will continue their insinuations that Russia will use this pipeline for some blackmail and political pressure on Europe, but we are well aware that they are just covering their own selfish interest, which is that they want Europe to refuse cheap Russian gas and bought American expensive shale, which they are going to deliver. Sanctions are an ineffective tool. Given that there is a direct interest of Europe, they would rather lift the sanctions than allow the launch of the pipeline to fail, ”said Morozov.
Note that on Wednesday, July 31, the US Senate Committee on International Affairs approved the bill on sanctions against the Nord Stream - 2. According to the initiative, it is prohibited to enter the territory of the United States to persons involved in “selling, leasing, providing or assisting in the provision of” ships for laying Russian pipelines on the seabed, as well as freezing their assets.
Now the document must be approved by both houses of the United States Congress and then will be sent for signature to the president.