"We, of course, did take the reports to account, but ... in case of Nord Stream 2 we are talking about an economic project, so there is no reason for us to take part in the present discussion", Demmer said at a briefing, adding that since this is "the initiative of the Mecklenburg-Vorpommern state, all questions should be asked there."
The Bild newspaper has reported that the regional authorities of the northern state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern were considering creating an environmental foundation to sidestep possible US sanctions against the pipeline project. The foundation would mark the pipeline as an important element of environmental protection and allow German companies to provide services through the foundation instead of the project operator, thus shielding them from sanctions.
The Nord Stream 2 project aims at laying a 745-mile-long twin pipeline that will carry up to 2 trillion cubic feet of gas per year from Russia to Germany. The US opposes the project and seeks to export more liquefied natural gas to Europe. The pipeline construction was suspended a year ago after sanctions forced Swiss pipelay company Allseas to withdraw from the project. Pipeline construction was resumed earlier this December and is expected to take several months, according to expert estimates.