Congress’s must-pass defense policy bill will be the vehicle to stop Russian President Vladimir Putin’s $11 billion project to deliver natural gas to Europe via a new pipeline from Russia to Germany, - Jim Risch
The U.S. Congress drafted a bill for the national defense budget for 2020, which would impose sanctions on companies involved in the construction of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline. Senate External Relations Committee Chairman Jim Risch noted it on the sidelines of the Halifax International Security Forum,Defence news reports.
“Congress’s must-pass defense policy bill will be the vehicle to stop Russian President Vladimir Putin’s $11 billion project to deliver natural gas to Europe via a new pipeline from Russia to Germany, a top U.S. lawmaker revealed Friday,” reads the message.
“It will cost them dearly. I think if those sanctions pass [the companies] will shut down, and I think the Russians will have to look for another way to do this, if they can do this,” Risch said.
Senate External Relations Committee Chairman said the addition of the language in the bill, which falls under the jurisdictions of the armed services committees, reflects an agreement between the administration, the House and Senate, and the banking committees. The text of the sanctions provision has not been made public, but Risch said it is close to the “Protecting Europe’s Energy Security Act.” That bill would sanction companies operating vessels that lay pipes for TurkStream and Nord Stream 2 pipelines.
Russia currently supplies about 40% of the EU's gas supplies, and the new pipeline will increase the amount of gas going under the Baltic to 55 billion cubic meters annually.
As we reported earlier, Russian President Vladimir Putin has stated that Russia is ready to conclude a gas transit agreement with Ukraine at 20-25% discounted prices