After the Russian vessel Akademik Chersky stopped the completion of the Nord Stream – 2 gas pipeline and returned to Kaliningrad, Germany found another option. Now the Russian-flagged vessel “Fortuna” will carry out underwater operations on the pipeline until the end of December, says the navigation warning from the Federal Maritime and Hydrographic Agency of Germany.
Specialized barge “Fortuna” under the Russian flag will continue laying pipes for the gas pipeline “Nord Stream – 2” in German waters, writes “RBC” with reference to the fresh navigation warning from the Federal Maritime and Hydrographic Agency of Germany.
The document states that in the Baltic Sea to the south of the shallow area of Adlergrund, the Fortuna vessel will conduct underwater operations on the pipeline from December 5 to 31. Currently “Fortune” stands in the German port of Wismar (Baltic Sea), according to MarineTraffic.
In this case, the final point of the route of the ship is not specified.
“Nord Stream – 2” is a gas pipeline that should connect Russia with Germany on the bottom of the Baltic Sea. The route length is more than 1200 km, the new pipeline capacity will be 55 billion m³ of gas per year. At first it was reported that the cost of the project – € 9.9 billion, later, according to The New York Times, it rose to almost $ 11 billion.
As of December 2019, 93.5% of the pipeline had been completed, said the official representative of the project operator – Nord Stream 2 AG – Jens Muller.
The authorities of the USA, Ukraine, Poland, Hungary, Moldova, Romania, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia consider the “Nord Stream 2” as a threat to energy security in Europe.
The construction of the gas pipeline was frozen because in December 2019 the USA imposed sanctions against European contractors involved in the project. Immediately after that, the Swiss company Allseas suspended the construction of Nord Stream-2 and withdrew its pipe-laying vessels from the Baltic Sea. “Gazprom announced that Russian pipelayers had been engaged to complete the project.
July 21, 2020 the House of Representatives, the lower house of the U.S. Congress, adopted the budget of the Ministry of Defense for the fiscal year 2021, which provides new sanctions against the “Nord Stream – 2”. On July 23, the draft defense budget was approved by the Senate. Versions of the documents adopted by the House of Representatives and the Senate will be agreed upon and then passed to the U.S. president for signing.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel stated as early as on September 1 that “Nord Stream – 2” is likely to succeed despite threats of the USA. On September 8, she said she would coordinate any actions against Russia due to poisoning of Russian opposition activist Alexey Navalny with European partners, but she had not yet decided whether they would affect the construction of gas pipeline. On September 11 the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Germany Heiko Maas stated that the construction of gas pipeline “Nord Stream – 2” may be frozen as a reaction to Navalny’s poisoning, but already on October 17 he announced that the gas pipeline would be completed.
Candidate for the US president from the Democratic Party Joe Biden stated his rigid position with regard to “North stream – 2”. He wants to stop this project forever.
The specially equipped Russian vessel Akademik Chersky did not begin to complete the gas pipeline and went to Kaliningrad on November 27. The ship was sent to Russia because the Norwegian company Det Norske Veritas – Germanischer Lloyd hired by “Gazprom” for certification of “Nord Stream-2” could not check the ship and its equipment because of the US sanctions.
Despite this, a representative of Nord Stream 2 AG announced plans to resume the gas pipeline construction as early as December 5. On December 5, the US Embassy in Berlin called on the German government to stop the construction of Nord Stream 2.
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