01:30 GMT21 September 2020
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    French energy company Engie is seeking to convince the European Union to support the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline construction as the project will enhance Western Europe's energy security, Chairman of Engie's Board of Directors Gerard Mestrallet said Thursday.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Engie is already taking part in the initial Nord Stream gas pipeline project as a partner and investor. The company has agreed to participate in the Nord Stream 2 project with the 10-percent share.

    "We consider that Nord Stream 2 brings real support to the energy security of Western Europe, and for these reasons we are trying to convince all the European policymakers that they should not only accept but support the construction of Nord Stream 2," Mestrallet told RT in an interview.

    According to the businessman, Engie is ready to invest in Nord Stream 2 as Europe's domestic natural gas production has been declining in recent years, so the region will have to increase import and partly cover deficit by gas deliveries from Russia which require appropriate infrastructure.

    Mestrallet also said that Europe should lift anti-Russia sanctions initially imposed in 2014.

    "We consider that Russia is a country where it is worth investing. The rebound of the economy in Russia in spite of the sanctions is spectacular. The French parliament voted recently [for] a declaration to ask politicians to give up sanctions. Significant part of the French business has also the same view that sanctions should be eliminated," the businessman added.

    Russian energy giant Gazprom and its partner companies signed a shareholders agreement on the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline in September 2015. Except for Engie, the prospective shareholders are Gazprom itself, with 50 percent of shares, Germany's Uniper SE and BASF/Wintershall (10 percent each), Anglo-Dutch Royal Dutch Shell (10 percent) and Austria's OMV AG (10 percent).

    Nord Stream 2 could provide up to 55 billion cubic meters of direct gas supplies from Russian shores through the Baltic Sea, bypassing Baltic states and Poland, to the German coast.


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