The development of accidents in Denmark and Great Britain will be important in the coming weeks for the fate of the Nord Stream 2 project criticized in Poland and a number of other European Union countries.
Will Denmark block the Nord Stream 2 section?
Denmark has adopted a law that allows it to assess the compliance of the project with its foreign and security policy. If it does not agree, Nord Stream 2 will have to bypass the Danish waters, which theoretically will delay the project. The company responsible for the project only admits that due to the delay, the costs would increase. – Nord Stream 2 treats this as a real threat – says the source in Reuters.
Reuters writes about intense Russian lobbying against such a resolution. Copenhagen encourages the United States to oppose it. Sandra Oudkirk, deputy secretary of state for energy diplomacy, visited the capital of Denmark as the first in Europe. According to the agency, the decision is to be taken in the spring, but there is no specific deadline. The Danes are afraid of the negative impact of the project on their safety. – It’s not about gas. This is one of the most important decisions in Denmark’s foreign policy since the Cold War – said an analyst from the Danish Institute of International Affairs, Hans Mouritzen.
Reuters recalls that the delay of Nord Stream 2 would weaken Gazprom’s negotiating position in talks with Ukraine, with which it has a transit agreement signed until the end of 2019, when the construction of the new bus would also end. In the event of a delay, it will be necessary to sign another one. Reuters gained information about the fluctuation of the Danish administration, which is afraid of such a significant decision. The growing tension in relations with Russia, which poisoned the citizens of Great Britain, convinces the operation. In a coordinated response to the so-called Skripal’s case, the diplomacy of the EU countries expelled some of the Russian diplomats. Denmark threw out two.
Will Britain be against Nord Stream 2?
According to British Prime Minister Theresa May, the topic of Nord Stream 2 may appear at the European Council meeting scheduled for June. She was asked by representatives of the British Parliament whether she persuaded the Germans to change their attitude towards this controversial project. May admitted that she asked the foreign ministers of the European Union to “look at things that could be discussed in June”. This means that the United Kingdom can officially opt out against Nord Stream 2. This would be a new support for the opponents’ camp.
The dispute over Nord Stream 2 with Germany
However, the attitude of the direct neighbor of Poland will be key. Germany recognizes Nord Stream 2 as a purely economic enterprise. Gas pipeline from Russia to Germany with a capacity of 55 billion cubic meters annually would provide European consumers with more gas at an attractive price. However, critics remind that the project poses a political threat because it divides European countries and undermines the EU’s common energy policy. It is also a legal threat, because it can operate regardless of the European law. Nord Stream 2 may also threaten the development of the market, lowering the profitability of alternative projects in which the EU invested to diversify sources of supply. Some countries are afraid of security risks due to the arrangement of this infrastructure in the Baltic Sea, where there are incidents involving the Russian fleet.