German Economic Affairs and Energy Minister Peter Altmaier said on Sunday on the sidelines of the German-Russian Petersburg Dialogue forum in Moscow that the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline had proved itself as a project aimed at ensuring energy security in the region.
“Nord Stream 2 is a project that proved itself. I want that private initiative, those initiatives that are aimed at the energy security and growth to be successful,” Altmaier said.
The minister added that he expected gas demand to continue to grow in Europe in the future, adding that the gradual replacement of fossil fuels by gas would benefit the ecology.
“We want to replace fossil fuels with greener energy sources. And, of course, if we compare coal and gas, gas is a more ecologically friendly source of energy… We do have the demand for gas and it will grow. Therefore, the implementation of [Nord Stream 2] project has a very important role, creates a diversification in gas supplies to Europe,” Altmaier indicated.
The Nord Stream 2 project envisages the construction of two gas pipelines that will run from Russia, through the Baltic Sea and to a hub in Germany, bypassing Ukraine entirely. The project is a joint venture of the Russian Gazprom energy giant with French Engie, Austrian OMV AG, UK-Dutch Royal Dutch Shell, and German Uniper and Wintershall.
Speaking further, the official noted that the US-Russian tensions, as well as sanctions between the two countries, should not create a situation in which the interests of big companies are harmed.
“Many put under question the extraterritorial impact of the US sanctions in terms of the international right. And this is correct, but they exist, and we need to make sure that the combination of Russian and US sovereign decisions does not lead to the fact that the activities of the big companies were weakened or complicated,” German Economic Affairs and Energy Minister Peter Altmaier said on Sunday on the sidelines of the German-Russian Petersburg Dialogue forum.
Earlier, Washington has imposed several rounds of sanctions on Russia over allegedly meddling in the 2016 US presidential election, poisoning former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter on the UK soil, and interfering in Ukraine affairs, among other reasons — accusations Russian officials have repeatedly denied as groundless.
The 17th meeting of the Petersburg Dialogue forum, aimed at promoting ties between Russia and Germany, is being held in the Russian capital on October 7-8. The meeting’s major theme is titled “Building Confidence, Strengthening Partnership: Cooperation Between Civil Societies of Russia and Germany as Impetus to Interstate Dialogue.”