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Russia to benefit from US-Germany Nord deal:expert

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Moscow. July 22 (Sputnik) The US-German deal on Nord Stream 2 benefits Moscow the most, while also allowing Berlin to score an important victory over the administration of former US President Donald Trump, which spearhead the sanctions against the project, Mamdouh Salameh, a leading international oil economist, told Sputnik.

On Wednesday, Germany and the United States struck a compromise deal over the Nord Stream 2, an energy project long opposed by Washington. The two nations agreed to support Ukraine and to sanction Russia if it tries to pursue “aggressive political ends by using energy as a weapon.”

“No matter how one looks at the deal reached yesterday between the United States and Germany over the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, [Russian] President Putin emerges as the real winner,” Salameh said, noting that German Chancellor Angela Merkel, in turn, “ends a highly successful political career with an outstanding victory over former President Trump and his administration.”

According to the expert, the “real loser” in the situation is Washington and its “anti-Russia allies” � Poland and the Baltic states. Ukraine, on the other hand, can still “salvage some benefit instead of facing total loss,” he said.

“Russia will continue pumping 40 billion cubic meters [1.4 trillion cubic feet] of gas via Ukraine a year in line with the existing five-year contract which expires in 2024. President Putin may agree to extend the agreement longer depending on Ukraine’s behaviour,” Salameh said.

The decision to extend gas transit can be affected by Ukraine’s attempt to join the European Union or NATO, which is a red line for Russia, the expert clarified.

Salameh added that it had always been unlikely that the project would be abandoned given Moscow’s and Berlin’s strong political will and economic relevance, as the pipeline “will safeguard the EU’s energy security and supplies.”

Despite these considerations, the American stance was not surprising and aligned well with Washington’s historic attempts to derail Russia-led energy projects prominent in the Soviet era, the expert added.

The Nord Stream 2 project provides for the construction of a 745-mile-long offshore twin pipeline, which will supply up to 1.9 trillion cubic feet of gas per year from Russia to Germany. The United States had opposed the project since its inception in 2012, and the Trump administration imposed sanctions on the pipeline in 2019.

From Agencies

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