(Bloomberg) -- The U.S. plans to sanction companies helping construct the Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline being laid from Russia to Germany under the Baltic Sea.
Congress is expected to begin preparing a bill, Energy Secretary Rick Perry said Tuesday in Ukrainian capital Kiev. That comes a day after the Gazprom PJSC-controlled company said that none of its contractors had pulled out because of the threat of U.S. sanctions.
“The opposition to Nord Stream 2 is still very much alive in the U.S.,” Perry said. “I expect over the course of the not-too-distant future that the U.S. Senate as well as the U.S. House send a bill to the president of the U.S. that will have some very, very onerous restrictions on companies that continue to do business with the Nord Stream 2 development. So stay tuned.”
READ MORE: Senators Draft Bill to Sanction Nord Stream 2
The U.S. argues that Nord Stream 2 increases Europe’s reliance on natural gas from Russia, which already provides more than a third of the region’s fuel, while at the same time threatening supplies to Ukraine, a key transit nation. The controversial link is backed by Germany and is still scheduled to start by the end of the year, though it faces delays from permitting issues in Denmark.
Gazprom didn’t immediately respond to a Bloomberg request for a comment. The “implementation of Nord Stream 2 is not subject to political sentiment” and Gazprom, as well as financial partners Uniper SE, Engie SA, Royal Dutch Shell Plc, OMV AG and BASF SE’s Wintershall, “are fully committed to the project,” Nord Stream 2 AG said.
(Updates with comment from Nord Stream 2 in fifth paragraph.)
--With assistance from Olga Tanas.
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