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Sanctions Against Russia Should Affect Its Business Cooperation with the EU – Expert

11 September 2020
Sanctions Against Russia Should Affect Its Business Cooperation with the EU – Expert

Nord Stream 2 stop should be part of the EU’s “single voice”

European sanctions against Russia should affect Russia’s economic and business cooperation with the EU. And the implementation of Nord Stream 2 as a project is fully consistent with this format of business cooperation. This was stated in a comment by DiXi Group President Olena Pavlenko.

The expert reminded that for a long time the German business community insisted that the completion of Nord Stream 2 was inevitable, as it was necessary for German big business and enterprises.

“Many German politicians took a similar position - as the pipeline is allegedly a “business project”, the influence of political forces on it is minimal, and the position of the European Commission and the European Parliament on stopping Nord Stream 2 was perceived as interference in the country’s internal affairs,” Pavlenko emphasizes.

However, the tragedy of the poisoning of Russian opposition leader Alexey Navalny changed the views of the German political elite.

“The insistence on German interests alone has waned, and today Germany is more open to forming a common European position when it comes to cooperating and communicating with Russia. The “one voice of the EU” policy, which has been so much talked and written about, has a chance again to be implemented,” Pavlenko believes. 

The list of possible sanctions against Russia cannot but include German projects, because that is where the Kremlin’s greatest interests in terms of energy expansion are concentrated.

“If to make the sanctions real, not just express concerns, they should affect Russia’s economic and business cooperation with the EU. And the implementation of Nord Stream 2 as a project is fully consistent with this format of business cooperation,” the expert said.

Pavlenko also adds that stopping the implementation of Nord Stream 2 in response to the Kremlin’s actions, including related parties and Russian companies in the EU sanctions list will not cause serious losses for Europe - because gas transportation through Ukraine remains relevant and can continue within the current transit contract.

Nord Stream 2 was a geopolitical project alternative to the Ukrainian way. Moreover, a number of European countries - Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, etc. - emphasized the threat to energy security from Nord Stream 2. Therefore, stopping this project would really be the realization of the “one voice” of the EU in the field of energy security,” Pavlenko said.

It will be recalled that the Polish government may offer its infrastructure for gas transportation to Germany in case Berlin refuses to use Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline. Recently, the President of the United States of America Donald Trump reiterated that Germany should abandon the construction of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline. However, he added that he was not sure whether Germany could afford to cancel the construction of the pipeline.


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