HomeMediaLatest NewsWhy the United States will change the position on Nord Stream 2

Why the United States will change the position on Nord Stream 2

08 December 2020

Salikhov Marcel R. President, Principal Director on Economic Studies, Head of the Economic Department

Marcel Salikhov, President of the Institute gave an interview to News.ru about the implementation of the Nord Stream-2 project.

The United States may stop opposing the Nord Stream 2 project after new President Joe Biden comes to power, Marcel Salikhov, President of the Institute for Energy and Finance told to NEWS.ru. According to him, perhaps the United States will consider other sanctions against Russia, but the gas pipeline will be left alone.

Under Donald Trump, the US and the EU have had serious disagreements on a wide range of issues, one of which is Nord Stream 2. Biden, on the other hand, is determined to improve relations with Europe, he stated this, this fits into his foreign policy agenda, the expert notes. Apparently, it will be aimed at building a strategic partnership and good relations with European allies.

Although Joe Biden has a hawkish attitude toward Russia, the relationship with the EU is much more important for Americans. It is an ally and one of the largest trading partners. It is quite possible that the position of the US administration will change in such a way that they will not actively oppose the implementation of Nord Stream 2. Maybe they will consider other sanctions against Russia, but not with respect to this gas pipeline, the economist said.

Earlier, the US Embassy in Germany called on the Federal Republic of Germany and the European Union to impose a moratorium on the construction of Nord Stream 2. Acting Ambassador of the United States Robin Quinville announced this. In response, the German Ministry of Energy said that Berlin rejects extraterritorial sanctions, which could be directed against the European companies participating in the project.

With arrival of the new White House administration, the US ambassador to Germany may be replaced or receive other instructions, notes Marcel Salikhov. He explains that Washington opposed the construction of the pipeline because of direct competition between American LNG and Gazprom. The current White House is supporting its natural gas producers and exporters, but the policy could change, the expert warns.

Biden said he was on a climate agenda for renewable energy. It is expected, he to limit the influence of oil and gas companies. Of course, these are just declarations, but he still cannot openly support American gas producers and be an open lobbyist for the oil and gas complex. For Biden's image, it will look strange, - the expert believes.

According to him, it is possible that Gazprom is also counting on a change in the vector of American policy and is waiting for the emergence of a new White House administration.

Nord Stream 2 has a good chance of completion in 2021, Salikhov said. If there is no active opposition from the United States, the pipe can be laid in the remaining sections in the spring, certification procedures can be completed in the summer and by the fall, and the pipeline can be put into operation by the end of the year. This is an optimistic scenario, but it is quite possible, the expert is sure. According to him, in any case, Gazprom needs to complete the construction of Nord Stream 2 so that it starts working and recoups the costs spent on its construction.

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