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Will Oil Hit $80 This Summer?

Will Oil Hit $80 This Summer?

Oil prices have recovered significantly…

Gazprom: Nord Stream 2 Construction To Be Completed In 2021

The controversial Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline project will definitely be completed this year, Viktor Zubkov, chairman of the board of directors of Russia's gas giant Gazprom, said on Friday. 

"The active work is underway, with quite a bit remaining to be done," Zubkov told reporters, as carried by Russian news agency TASS.

"It will surely be completed this year, definitely," Zubkov noted.

Around 90-92 percent of the work required for the project has already been done, the Gazprom executive said.

Earlier this year, Gazprom was said to have warned investors that the Nord Stream 2 project could be suspended or entirely discontinued due to extraordinary circumstances, including "political pressure."

The project, which has divided Europe and drawn opposition and criticism from the United States, has to complete pipe-laying work in Danish territorial waters. However, the United States is threatening more sanctions on entities that help Gazprom, and on the partners in the project as it continues to seek to stop the project from actually happening and being commissioned.

Germany, the end-point of the pipeline, has always looked at the Russia-led project from an economic standpoint, while the United States, several European countries, including the Baltic states, Poland, and the European Union (EU), have expressed concern about Russia using gas sales and its gas monopoly Gazprom as a political tool.

U.S. President Joe Biden "continues to believe that Nord Stream 2 is a bad deal for Europe," White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said at a briefing at the end of January.

Over the past months, the U.S. has been broadening the sanctions against service providers and those funding vessels involved in the construction of Nord Stream 2 in a fresh attempt to prevent the project from completing. There is still a stretch of the pipeline route to be laid in the sea in Danish waters, but the U.S. is now targeting anyone helping the project's completion in any way.

By Charles Kennedy for Oilprice.com

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  • Sergey Smith on April 20 2021 said:
    As I’ve said elsewhere, this obstructionist policy by the U.S. - which is TOTALLY ILLEGAL, - is ultimately about keeping Russia as weak as possible militarily. Germany is a vassal state for the U.S. They appear free from a distance, but the real test is if/when they should go against what the U.S. wants. Trump said it honestly: We will never allow anyone to get anywhere near us ( re military power ). But why is that so very important?
    So that they can continue to advance the NWO Satanic agenda. Seeing Russia is still a Christian nation – unlike the U.S. *really*, they have to be crushed, - just like all the other resistors, - like Gaddafi. – And for THAT, Russia can’t be allowed to get too strong, and techno-militarily, they are already a very serious threat.
  • George Doolittle on March 28 2021 said:
    Even including shipping costs I think US lng is still competitive in through the Baltic Sea and the Mediterranean although obviously Putin's Russia still must post up against Great Britain insofar as both natural gas and now "big wind"/underwater electric coming from Scotland is concerned.
  • Robert Berke on March 27 2021 said:
    US want to force Germany to use 'freedom gas.'
  • Jared Keplinger on March 27 2021 said:
    Just the US interfering with other people’s business and lives per the usual.
  • Mamdouh Salameh on March 26 2021 said:
    Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline is unstoppable. It will be completed this year as the latest confirmation to that effect comes from Mr Viktor Zubkov, chairman of the board of directors of Russia's gas giant Gazprom.

    But even without this conformation, Putin’s Russia would never succumb to pressure from the United States and will do whatever it takes to ensure that Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline is completed.

    However, the Nord Stream 2 saga exposes an ugly aspect of the United States. In matters relating to its needs and national interests, the United States uses double standards and is prepared to bend the rules. On the one hand, it warns the European Union (EU) against becoming too dependent on Moscow for natural gas supplies thus imposing the most restrictive sanctions on the Nord Stream 2. On the other hand, it is buying more of Russian oil than ever before. In normal circumstances, it should be “what is good for the goose is good for the gander” to borrow a well know English proverb.

    Deprived of access to Venezuelan extra-heavy crude by sanctions and facing reduced shipments from OPEC, US refiners turned to Russian oil in 2020 to fill the gap.

    After years of accounting for less than 0.5% of annual US oil and refined products, Russian oil exports shot up to an all-time high of 7% last year according to Bloomberg News calculations. Russian oil exports to the US averaged 538,000 barrels a day (b/d) in 2020 compared with an average of 522,000 b/d from Saudi Arabia.

    Dr Mamdouh G Salameh
    International Oil Economist
    Visiting Professor of Energy Economics at ESCP Europe Business School, London

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