Polish diplomat criticises decision to establish Nord Stream 2 foundation

Andrzej Przyłębski, the Polish ambassador to Germany has criticised plans to establish a foundation to support the construction of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline. The German-Russian pipeline, to run across the Baltic seabed, has been strongly opposed by Poland and the Baltic countries.

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Mr Przyłębski told Germany’s NDR broadcaster on Thursday that Warsaw saw NS2 as “a project that divided the EU and weakened the security of Poland and the Baltic states.”

He added that the foundation project, initiated by the authorities of Germany’s north-eastern state of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, in response to the US sanctions on the pipeline’s constructors, “has complicated the already difficult debate around the Nord Stream 2 undertaking.”

Defending the foundation plans on Thursday, Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania Prime Minister Manuela Schwesig appealed for prompt consultations on the matter with the new US government.

Ms Schwesig said that the German federal government should insist on the withdrawal of US sanctions on NS 2, adding that the foundation project “has received a strong positive response from public opinion.”

Construction on the EUR 11 bn pipeline was halted in late 2019 after one of its constructors, the Swiss Allseas company, withdrew its pipe-laying ships from the project, fearing US sanctions.

The Nord Stream 2 foundation is to secure the pipeline constructors against US sanctions by financing construction materials and machinery.

The foundation plans have also been criticised by Germany’s Greens party, who claim Nord Stream 2 is a “geopolitical lever” for Russia and is “anti-European.”