Midstream

Baker Hughes, AXA Group and 16 more drop Nord Stream 2 project

Nord Stream 2

Baker Hughes, AXA Group, among other 16 companies have dropped the Nord Stream 2 project in Europe, after the U.S. took some pressure with potential sanctions. A complete list of the companies that dropped the project, and therefore liberating themselves from sanctions was reported this Wednesday by Reuters.

The list of companies includes DNV GL, Zurich Insurance, Munich Re, Tokyo Marine Kiln Syndicates; there is also Aspen Managing Agency, AEGIS Managing Agency, Bilfinger, and some more.

As we reported previously, Nord Stream 2 is a pipeline project which intends to send natural gas from Russia to Germany; through the Baltic Sea; however, the U.S. has opposed to the project since the Obama administration; as it would enhance Russia’s economic and political power in the region.

Firstly, it would bypass Ukraine and other countries, depriving them form lucrative transit fees; secondly, in the seabed where the pipeline intends to go through, unexploded bombs from the World War II lie. Consequently, for the U.S. “the project is a bad deal for Europe.”

In contrast, Russia has been racing to finish the $11 billion project, that covers 1,200 kilometers. The total capacity the project would have is 55 billion cubic meters of gas per year. In addition to the Nord Stream 1 pipeline, the whole project would have 110 billion cubic meters of gas every year.

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Nord Stream 2 Sanctions

Nord Stream 2, strictly commercial: Russia

On the other hand, in early February, two senators urged president Joe Biden to ensure the implementation of sanctions to the project. Democrat Jeanne Shaheen and Republican Jim Risch; both urged the state Department to issue right away the report to Congress identifying the companies involved in the projects.

Moreover, the project became more political, after Kremlin critic, Alaxei Navalany, was imprisoned in Russia earlier this month. Former president Donald Trump pushed the liquified natural gas exports to Europe, as an alternative to Russian gas; and as a strategy to push the Kremlin back.

Still, the state-owned gas company Gazprom, with several more companies claim that Nord Stream 2 is strictly commercial.

Consequently, after this pressure, European, Asian and American companies drew back from the project in order to avoid sanctions.

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