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Nord Stream 2 builders say project is on schedule, but will the gas find customers?10 January 2019
German support for the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project is wavering as politicians from both left and right begin to unpick its implications.
Vocal opposition by the Trump administration may also be playing a part, as German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s government grows less committed to a project it has backed to the hilt, The Moscow Times writes.
Merkel has helped lead the Euro-American effort to end the conflict in eastern Ukraine, but hopes for Russian-Ukrainian reconciliation have soured since the Kerch Strait incident, when Russia seized three Ukrainian ships in the Sea of Azov, said Christian Democratic Union lawmaker and foreign affairs specialist Juergen Hardt.
“The events on the Kerch Strait at least showed me that these are unfulfilled hopes,” Hardt told the Moscow paper. “Russia, in my view, isn’t moving a millimeter from its objectives.”
“The debate in Germany has become more critical. … It would have been better to take this political dimension into account,” Schmid said.
If pushed, Washington has ways to make its opposition to Nord Stream 2 crystal clear, U.S. Ambassador to Germany Richard Grenell told Handelsblatt in a recent interview.
Companies working on the pipeline “are always in danger, because sanctions are always possible,” Grenell said, adding that he was sure the companies would pull out of the project rather than accept them.
The $11 billion pipeline, a joint venture between Russia’s Gazprom and five European energy companies, has never sat comfortably with the European Union’s stated goal of reducing its heavy reliance on Russian gas.
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The Moldovan Diaries is a multimedia, interactive examination of the country's ethnic, religious, social and political identities by Paolo Paterlini and Cesare De Giglio.
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