us and world news - 23-02-21
A subsidiary of the German reinsurance company Munich RE said that it stops providing insurance services for the construction of the Nord Stream-2 because of possible US sanctions, reports Reuters.
"We can confirm that our subsidiary Munich Re Syndicate Ltd. has issued a notice of termination with Nord Stream 2. However, for privacy reasons, we do not normally comment on individual contracts, " said a spokesman for Munchener Ruckversicherungs-Gesellschaft.
Later on Tuesday, a representative of the parent company Munich Re also confirmed this information in response to requests from journalists.
In January, it was reported that the insurance company Zurich Insurance Group AG stopped providing insurance services for the construction of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project due to the threat of US sanctions.
The US State Department has listed the Russian vessel "Fortuna" and its owner - the company "KVT - Rus", which are already subject to other restrictions imposed under the administration of Donald Trump, in the list for possible sanctions on the "Nord Stream-2", which was submitted to Congress. We are talking about the laws "On countering America's Adversaries through Sanctions" (CAATSA) and "On Protecting European Energy Security" (PEESA).
Priority project within a reasonable time frame
According to the German newspaper Tagesspiegel, as of February 22, 18 companies, including previously known companies, refused to cooperate with the operators and builders of the Russian gas pipeline Nord Stream-2. The head of the press service of the State Department, Ned Price, confirmed to the publication that more than 15 legal entities "made good efforts to curtail activities" related to the construction of the gas pipeline.
Most of them are insurance companies with headquarters in the UK. In addition, the report includes the Swiss Zurich Insurance Group, the French Axa Group, as well as the German concerns Bilfinger SE and Munich Re Syndicate
The US State Department considers the withdrawal of companies from the project proof of the effectiveness of sanctions.
The Nord Stream 2 project involves the construction of two strands of a gas pipeline with a total capacity of 55 billion cubic meters per year from the coast of Russia through the Baltic Sea to Germany.
The construction of the Nord Stream 2 was halted almost a year ago after the US military budget included sanctions against ships carrying out offshore pipe laying. Due to the imposition of sanctions, the Swiss contractor Allseas has curtailed work on the project.
After that, the Russian side undertook the completion of the highway on its own. In December 2020, Nord Stream 2 AG (owned by Gazprom") The company resumed laying the pipe, building 2.6 km of the pipeline in the exclusive economic zone of Germany. Claims that the construction of the gas pipeline is more than 90% complete.
Gazprom expects Nord Stream 2 to be put into operation "within a reasonable time frame." It is noted that Nord Stream-2 remains one of the priority investment projects of the holding in 2021.
The new defense budget, which was passed over the US president's veto, includes additional sanctions against Nord Stream 2 . They are also directed against ship insurers and service companies that perform surveying, trenching, welding and other work. The sanctions also apply to companies that carry out testing and certification of the project, without which it cannot be put into operation.
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