Polish Briefing 9 July, 2019 9:00 am   
Editorial staff

Polish Briefing: US sanctions against Nord Stream 2 without Trump’s signature

What goes on in Poland on the 9th of July.

US sanctions against Nord Stream 2 remain without Trump’s signature

The President of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zełenski referred to the topic of Nord Stream 2 during his visit to Lugansk together with the President of the European Council, Donald Tusk. He counts on US sanctions for the disputed project. US President Donald Trump has still not signed any draft of restrictions.

Politicians appeared in Luganska Stanica near the area of ​​war activities in Ukraine, conducted by forces supported by Russia. They honored bomb victims. On this occasion, Zełenski mentioned talks with the President of the Republic of Poland Andrzej Duda about the disputed Nord Stream 2 project.

In his opinion, the topic will appear during the meeting with Duda scheduled for September, but Ukraine will not be able to convince Europe to block construction, because local businesses in Germany and France will prevent action against Nord Stream 2.

German Minister of Economy Peter Altmeier repeated in a recent interview for Bild newspaper that the new gas pipeline from Russia to his country will not make it dependent on Russian gas, because the planned LNG terminals will be an alternative. However, a new gas is needed to move away from the nuclear energy and coal planned for 2035-38 that requires the protection of renewable sources by gas.

Altmeier assured that he will work to maintain gas supplies from Russia via Ukraine, despite the alternative in the form of Nord Stream 2. – I think that Ms. Merkel and Mr. Macron will not stop the construction of Nord Stream, because their local business impacts them too much. They cannot do anything – admitted the Ukrainian president. In his opinion, only US intervention can help. – This is the only solution. I will meet with President Trump in the USA. This is the only person who can solve this problem in favor of Ukraine – he said. The Americans are considering introducing sanctions against Nord Stream 2 in line with several bills submitted to the Senate, but have not yet taken a decision on this matter. It can be made by signature of President Donald Trump under one of the laws. Poles appealed for US sanctions against Nord Stream 2 in October 2018, for now without success.

Gazprom’s Vice President Vitaliy Markelov argued at the annual meeting of company shareholders that Russia is ready to extend the existing gas supply agreement through Ukraine. He argued that Nord Stream 2 will be built on time, i.e. at the end of this year.

This information contradicts reports from about the delay of the project recorded in the documents of the company responsible for its construction. The future of supplies through Ukraine will depend on the pace of implementation of the project. Without a ready Nord Stream 2, the Russians will have to go on a system extending supplies through this country. Kiev and Brussels want a new contract in line with European regulations limiting Gazprom.