Battlefield Nord Stream 2

by Prof Dr Eberhard Hamer*

On 10 April 2018, the Ukrainian ruler Poroshenko visited Mrs Merkel and demanded that she stop the construction of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline through the Baltic Sea from Russia to Germany, which would “change the transit role of Ukraine for Russian natural gas and its revenues for this gas transit, as well as the strategic position of Ukraine”.
It is true that the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, which will no longer pass through foreign territory but instead through the Baltic Sea, should ensure the independence of gas supplies from Russia to Germany, so that there will be no more opportunity for Ukraine to stop these gas supplies, for dictating the transit price at Germany’s expense, or for constantly tapping into the gas pipeline illegally. Russia as well as Germany would be relieved of dependence on Ukraine for their vital supplies of gas.
Poroshenko can rely on the EU Commission, which also opposes the Nord Stream 2 pipeline because of its hate against Russia, because it wants to preserve Ukraine as the only gas transit country and therefore a pawn against Russia.
And even the US has decided to sanction all companies involved in Nord Stream 2. They oppose the construction of this gas supply because they have an oversupply of gas even in their own country, which they want to sell liquefied in Europe and, above all, in Germany (Cuxhaven).
Luckily, former Chancellor Schröder is on the board of the Nord Stream 2 project and has so far, on the domestic front, calmed the campaign against this gas supply which is in actual fact indispensable for Germany. However, whether he can in the long run resist the foreign policy pressure applied by Washington, Brussels, Ukraine and the Western oil and gas industry, will ultimately be decided in Berlin.
At least, those international permits for the transfer of the oil pipeline through the Baltic Sea which have so far been issued were granted despite American protests and sanctions. Also the companies involved in the oil pipeline fear the liability consequences of exiting from their contracts more than the American boycott. Thus, the opponents of the Nord Stream gas pipeline focus on blackmailing the Merkel government to make it initiate the stop.
As she always does, so also in this question Merkel is already partly caving in. She assured Poroshenko that “from our point of view, a Nord Stream 2 project is not possible without any clarity as to the continuation of the Ukrainian transit role”. So she seems to be ready to stop the gas security which is vital to our economy, if she can thereby maintain Ukraine’s current blackmail situation. Yet the purpose of the expensive new gas pipeline Nord Stream 2 is precisely to prevent this blackmail by Ukraine. Merkel seems ready to cause harm to her voters by the Ukraine risk to the Russian gas supply and by replacement of the latter with the expensive American liquefied gas.
Once again, the Berlin colonial administration does not have the courage to resist the orders issued by its colonial power (USA).    •

*    Prof Dr Eberhard Hamer is the founder of the Mittelstandsinstitut Hannover as well as author and editor of several books like among others “Was tun, wenn der Crash kommt? Wie sichere ich mein Vermögen oder Unternehmen?” (What should we do when the crash comes? How do I secure my assets?) 10th edition 2008,  and “Visionen 2050. Wohin steuern wir? Trends und Prognosen für Deutschland und Europa” (Visions 2050. Where are we heading? Trends and forecasts for Germany and Europe) 2016.
(Translation Current Concerns)