US repeats Nord Stream 2 criticism as pipeline project runs into new trouble
Bloomberg / Politico
US Vice President Mike Pence has reiterated his administration’s criticism of the controversial German-Russian Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline project in the Baltic Sea, Nick Wadhams reports for Bloomberg. “It is simply unacceptable for Europe’s largest economy to continue to ignore the threat of Russian aggression,” Pence said at the 70th anniversary celebration of the NATO military alliance in Washington, which the vice president also used to rebuke Germany for not spending enough on defence and contribute its agreed share to the NATO budget. Pence said it was “also wrong for Germany to become dependent on Russian energy.”
Meanwhile, the pipeline project has run into new legal problems as Denmark requested another assessment of its planned route, Anca Gurzu writes for the news website Politico. Denmark is the last country on Nord Stream 2’s planned route that has not given its approval for a construction permit. According to the article, the Danish intervention could mean that the project is delayed for several years.
The pipeline that will run parallel to the already existing predecessor Nord Stream 1 has been vigorously criticized repeatedly not only by the US, which wants to sell Germany its own natural gas via LNG terminals, but also by most of Germany’s eastern EU neighbours, who fear it will be used to bypass them in energy trading. Germany’s government stresses that it does not intend to undermine solidarity with eastern European states but that it is looking for sources to cover its gas demand as European suppliers are set to drastically lower their output.