His comments sparked a vehement response from Kiev, where Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba declared that “dependence on Russian gas is killing,” reports Politico.
The gas pipeline is completed, but Berlin refused, at the end of February, to allow it to be put into operation, in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Kubicki, a member of Finance Minister Christian Lindner’s Democratic Party (FDP), called for the pipeline to be activated “as soon as possible” to fill gas storage before winter.
He said there was “no good reason not to open Nord Stream 2” because Germany already receives gas through the older Nord Stream pipeline, which links Russia to Germany. Getting “gas from Nord Stream 2 is no more immoral than from Nord Stream 1″. It’s just a different pipeline,” he said.
Nord Stream imports have recently fallen to just 20% of capacity, a drop that Russia’s Gazprom has blamed on a delay in turning on a gas turbine.
Kubicki said the opening of Nord Stream 2 would test whether Russian President Vladimir Putin is willing to increase gas supplies to Germany. The Russian leader said last month: “We have one more route ready – this is Nord Stream 2. We can put it into operation.”
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