Russia says Nord Stream 2 ready for commissioning
After several western attempts to block its construction, citing "dependence on Russia", Russia's Nord Stream 2 is complete and ready for commissioning.
Russian Gazprom's Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline is ready for commissioning after its second line from Russia to Germany has been filled with gas, Gazprom CEO Alexei Miller announced Wednesday.
According to Miller, the Russian energy giant has met all long-term gas supply contracts.
"Today at 12:58 Moscow time [09:58 GMT], Gazprom completed the filling of the second thread of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline with gas. The first and second threads of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline are under operational pressure and are fully ready for operation," Miller declared.
The CEO also revealed that the company had fulfilled its obligations to transit gas through Ukraine.
"Gazprom fully fulfilled its obligations under the contract for gas transit via Ukraine, our planned volume of 40 billion cubic meters of gas. Today we have already transited 41.5 billion cubic meters through Ukraine," he said during a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Russia ready to supply gas to Europe
President Putin announced that Russia would be ready to immediately start supplying Europe with Gas if the European countries decide to launch Nord Stream 2.
Now, of course, he said, everything depends on Moscow's partners, European consumers, and Germany.
"As soon as they decide to start work, large volumes, additional volumes of Russian gas will immediately begin to flow to Europe. Let me remind you that this is 55 billion cubic meters per year."
According to Putin, the launch of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline will see gas prices decreasing, not only for Europe but also for Ukraine.
The Director of the Russian Foreign Ministry's Department of Economic Cooperation said Wednesday Washington’s sanctions against the Nord Stream 2 project were pointless, as the construction of the gas pipeline had been completed.
"To be honest, we see no point in Washington's sanctions policy in conditions when the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline has already been built," the diplomat declared.
In light of the Russian-Ukrainian tensions, German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock said Sunday Russia's Nord Stream 2 would not be allowed to operate in Ukraine, citing an agreement between Washington and Berlin.
The pipeline, which has been backed by Russian President Vladimir Putin on the one hand and Scholz's predecessor Angela Merkel on the other in recent years, has been criticized by several sides.
The US and several Eastern European countries are worried that Europe would be too dependent on Russia.
In mid-November, the German energy regulator had suspended the certification procedure for Nord Stream 2 by requiring the Swiss-based consortium in charge of its operation to create a company under German law.