Nord Stream 2 Investor OMV Says Project Can Still Meet Deadline

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The leader of a company invested in Nord Stream 2 said the project’s completion date has not been changed and the pipeline could still be delivered on time and budget, despite Denmark’s long-pending decision on a construction permit.

Rainer Seele, CEO of Austrian energy firm OMV said the schedule depends on what Danish authorities decide and when their decision is made.

“The Nord Stream 2 company has clearly informed us that it is sticking to the schedule and the budget, and we have no reason to revise the plan in any way today,” Reuters quoted Seele as saying when asked if a launch at the end of 2019 or early 2020 was realistic.

Russia’s Gazprom originally scheduled completion of the $12 billion (11 billion euro) Nord Stream 2 by the end of this year.

A recent Gazprom update indicated it is already more than 75% complete, but it has been waiting more than two years for Denmark to approve construction of about 100 miles (160 km) of pipe through its territorial waters. It would take a few weeks for the Allseas pipelaying vessel to construct the Danish section.

“What will be decisive is when the Danish authorities make the decision, and what decision they will make,” said Seele.

The project has met resistance from the United States and some European countries concerned that the region is over-reliant on Russian gas, as well as with the financial impact on Ukraine when Russia can bypass its pipelines for delivery to Europe.

The United States has pressured Denmark to reject Nord Stream 2 construction and has threatened various sanctions related to the project. In Kiev this summer, then White House National Security Advisor John Bolton again pressed Denmark while speaking against the Baltic Sea project.

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