The multi-billion pound Nord Stream 2 will run through the Baltic Sea and supply gas to Germany and the EU. But German energy company Uniper warned it could be forced to freeze construction due to US sanctions. Delays in the building of the Berlin-backed €9.5billion (£8.5billion) Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline across the Baltic Sea to the EU means the project could be scrapped altogether.
A report by Uniper said: “As the US intensifies its efforts to target sanctions against the Nord Stream 2 project, the likelihood of a delay or even a halt in pipeline construction increases.”
It comes after US senators Ted Cruz, Tom Cotton and Ron Johnson wrote a letter to the management of Faehrhafen Sassnitz GmbH and warned them of grave consequences unless the company stops using the port of Mukran as the logistical base for Nord Stream 2, according to Handelsblatt newspaper.
German Foreign Ministry spokesman Christopher Burger said the US sanctions “contradict the law”.
And Steffen Seibert, the government spokesman, said: “Our stance against extraterritorial sanctions is known. We clearly reject it.”
German Foreign Minister Heiko Mass told how he expressed his “surprise and displeasure” to US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo about the US sanctions in a previous phone call.
He said: “I mentioned it in a telephone call with Mike Pompeo yesterday and expressed my surprise and displeasure.”
Berlin’s political establishment believe Nord Stream 2 is a way in which Germany can put a stop to any conflict with Russia.
It comes amid deteriorating relations between the US and Germany.
The US President has been vocal of his criticisms of German Chancellor Angela Merkel and her Government, making the Nord Stream, owned by Gazprom PJSC, one of his main targets.
Mr Trump told a rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma last weekend: “We’re supposed to protect Germany from Russia, but Germany is paying Russia billions of dollars for energy coming from a pipeline.
“Excuse me, how does that work?”
The US leader has also warned he will slash the number of US troops in Germany, while also repeating a threat to pile several new levies onto the German car industry.
Mr Maas is scheduled to meet with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in Moscow today for talks over Nord Stream 2.