09 July, 2018 0 2881
On September 2015, Russian Gazprom and list of European energy giants announced an agreement on further constructing of the Nord Stream 2 (NS 2) – another one gas pipeline from Russia under the Baltic Sea landing in Germany. At once it became clear, that constructing the pipeline is a kind of a threat for Ukraine who now is a crucial important gas transporter from Russia to the European Union (EU) member states and thereafter would undermine Ukrainian positions bringing economic losses, political and security threats.
From Ukrainian prospective the Nord Stream 2 is treated as a mostly politically driven project, at somehow aimed against Ukraine, which will also increase dependence of the EU states on Russian gas, and consequently make those more vulnerable to Russia’s policy in future. Such arguments are widely used by Ukrainian politicians and in official statements.
However, such perception does not take into consideration arguments and befits of those EU member states, who support the project and current internal political conditions. At final extent, such approach brings to a kind of misunderstanding between supporters and opponents of the Nord Stream 2 construction and achieving of the Ukrainian aim is rather questionable.
Nord Stream 2 problem in general consist of two dimensions: economic and political. Those are at somehow contradictory for the project’s actors. The first one is based on benefits that some countries (first of all Russia and certain EU member states) expect to gain with the NS 2 project. The political one is in the domain contradiction of supporting Russia in its energy business during its violating of the international law, threats for Ukraine and its concerns regarding loosing gas supply interdependence with the EU. Current ways and attempts to impact on the NS 2 development do not manage to bundle both those dimensions to find a solution that will acceptable for all parties involved in all developments and outcome related to construction and future operation of the NS 2 pipeline.
Future of the Nord Stream 2 is not clear yet and this means necessity for Ukraine to continue taking steps aimed on protecting its own position. This paper aims to describe main drivers and benefits for parties, involved in supporting the NS 2 comparing to Ukrainian perceptions and official statement on this matter. However, NS 2 is not a unique threat for Ukrainian gas transit capabilities and corresponding resulting benefits. This drives not only necessity of efforts to cope with the NS 2, but also strengthening Ukrainian gas transit capabilities and energy security in general. Authors offered (Final remarks chapter) for Ukraine and its main ally in energy security – US actions frameworks to contain Russia regarding the NS 2 project, strengthen and secure Ukraine.