Mecklenburg-Vorpommern Economy

Timeline: Nord Stream 2 – The difficult birth of the gas pipeline from Russia to Germany


(Reuters) – The Nord Stream 2 project, a focal point of a major discord between Moscow and Washington, plans to resume pipelaying on a 2.6 km section of the pipeline before the end of the year, and a Russian pipelay ship has arrived at the site .

FILE PHOTO: The Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project logo is seen on the pipe cap at the construction site of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline near the city of Kingisepp, Leningrad region, Russia, June 5, 2019. REUTERS / Anton Vaganov

The alleged attack on Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny in August is the latest political controversy surrounding the near-completed Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline as Germany discusses halting the project as part of potential sanctions against Russia.

Led by Russia’s Gazprom with Western partners, the pipeline, which would double the capacity of the existing Nord Stream 1 connection, is more than 90% complete and is scheduled to go into operation in early 2021.

The project has divided the European Union, with some members saying it will undermine the traditional gas transit state of Ukraine and increase the bloc’s energy dependence on Russia.

The United States, looking to increase sales of liquefied natural gas (LNG) to Europe, is also against the pipeline and has sanctioned some companies.

Here are some key dates in the development of Nord Stream 2:


November: Nord Stream 2’s predecessor, Nord Stream 1, a consortium led primarily by Gazprom, begins deliveries to Europe under the Baltic Sea via a double pipeline system. The system’s capacity of 55 billion cubic meters (bcm) corresponds to enough gas to heat 26 million households.

Gazprom and Western partners begin to add two more pipelines to the system to add another 55 billion cubic meters of capacity. The project is valued at 9.5 billion euros ($ 11.3 billion).


June: Gazprom, Royal Dutch Shell, E.ON, OMV, BASF and ENGIE agree to build Nord Stream 2. []


March: Eight EU governments – the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Slovakia and Romania – reject the project and warn that it could have “potentially destabilizing geopolitical consequences”.


April 2017: Nord Stream 2 AG signs financing agreements with ENGIE, OMV, Shell, E.ON subsidiary Uniper and BASF subsidiary Wintershall []


January: Germany grants Nord Stream 2 a permit for construction and operation in German waters and landfall areas near Lubmin in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania

September: Pipeline-laying work begins in the Baltic Sea


January – US ambassador to Germany warns those involved in construction of sanctions if they stick to the project []

December – The Swiss-Dutch company Allseas suspends its pipeline laying activities as US President Donald Trump signs a defense law that provides for sanctions against companies laying pipes for Nord Stream 2.

December: Trump signs the law.


January: Russian President Vladimir Putin hopes Nord Stream 2 will be ready by the end of the first quarter of 2021. Chancellor Angela Merkel sees the project as legitimized by European regulation and should therefore be completed. []

May: The German energy regulatory authority refuses to grant the operators of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline a waiver of EU gas directives, which require separate operators for the production, transport and distribution of energy on German territory.

May: An EU court throws off a challenge to the EU gas regulations of the operators of the Nord Stream 1 and Nord Stream 2 pipelines and says it is up to the individual member states to enforce them. The application of the gas rules costs time and money, but does not call the pipeline operation as such into question.

June: Poland initiates proceedings against Gazprom for alleging that it did not cooperate in the country’s antimonopoly proceedings over Nord Stream 2.[nW8N28600O[nW8N28600O[nW8N28600O[nW8N28600O

August: Poland fines Gazprom 213 million zloty (US $ 57 million) for failing to cooperate on the matter.

September 3: Pressure mounts on Merkel to rethink the pipeline after Navalny was poisoned with a Soviet-style neurotoxin.

September 7: Merkel’s spokeswoman tells Bild am Sonntag that she has questioned the project.

8 September: Merkel and her economics minister downplay the stop of the pipeline

September 11: The Prime Minister of the German state Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, where Nord Stream 2 would land, says the pipeline should not be used to punish Moscow in the Navalny case. Merkel wants to agree on an answer with EU partners.

September 14: A Berlin government spokesman once again calls on Russia to clarify the events surrounding Navalny’s illness.

September 15: Data shows that a Russian ship has sailed to the supply base of the Nord Stream 2 project in Germany.

September 23: The world’s largest group of shipping insurers says it will not insure ships involved in the Nord Stream 2 and TurkStream gas pipeline projects due to impending US sanctions.

Oct 1: Denmark grants the Nord Stream 2 consortium permission to operate its Baltic Sea natural gas pipeline in Danish waters.

October 6: Gazprom says it plans to finish Nord Stream 2 “as soon as possible”.

October 7: Poland fined Gazprom more than 29 billion zlotys (7.6 billion US dollars) for building Nord Stream without Warsaw’s consent.

November 4: Gazprom appeals the fine to a Polish court.

Nov. 11: Sanctions against companies that facilitate the construction of the pipeline are included in the annual U.S. Defense Bill, according to sources.

November 28: Russia’s Nord Stream 2 plans to resume pipeline-laying work on a 2.6 km section of the pipeline before the end of the year.

Dec 1: The Stralsund Maritime Authority informs shippers about pipeline laying activities from Dec 5 to 31 in the Baltic Sea.

December 3: US lawmaker introduces new US Defense Policy Bill aimed at companies and individuals who are helping the project.

Dec 5: The Russian lay vessel Akademik Cherskiy stops near the construction site of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline in the Baltic Sea.

($ 1 = 0.8424 euros)

Reporting by Tommy Lund and Bartosz Dabrowski in Danzig, editing by Vera Eckert, Edward Taylor and Mark Potter