TEHRAN, Young Journalists Club (YJC) -The United States is afraid of fair competition in the energy sector, and is hampering the implementation of the Russian Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project, according to Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.
“There is reprisal in the energy sector against North Stream 2. It is the US which is calling it politicized, leading to a split in Europe, and the strangling of Ukraine,” he said at a press conference on Monday.
“Washington clearly forces Europeans to abandon Nord Stream 2, despite the fact that gas deliveries to Germany via the pipeline could be 2,000km shorter than through Ukraine, and the cost of transit could be halved,” said the Russian diplomat.
Europeans “are being forced to buy much more expensive liquefied gas from the United States instead of Russian gas,” Lavrov added.
He also said that the US could not withstand fair competition from Russia in the gas-export sector.
Russia plans to build the Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline under the Baltic Sea to Germany, and to double the existing pipeline's capacity of 55 billion cubic meters per year.
The project has faced fierce resistance from some EU members, especially from the Baltic states and Poland. They say the pipeline will cut gas transit through Ukraine and will result in a Russian monopoly in the EU gas market.
Other countries like Austria, Hungary and Germany are in favor of buying Russian gas.