US President Joe Biden has appointed his former close adviser and ex-special envoy of the State Department for international energy issues Amos Hochstein to a similar position related to the issues of the “Nord stream-2” pipeline. The Axios portal reported this.
According to the sources of the publication, the appointment of Hochstein, who previously categorically opposed the implementation of this project, means that he will “actively seek an effective strategy” for the United States. He will also deal with relations with Germany.
In the spring, Politico journalists reported that the White House was looking for a person who would lead the negotiations on the termination of the project, and it was Hochstein who was considered for this role, although he initially disagreed. Subsequently, the position of the US administration on the “Nord stream-2” has changed.
In July, Berlin and Washington issued a joint statement, referring to measures to support Ukraine, European energy security, and common goals for climate protection. In it, the parties formulated some conditions for the operation of the “Nord stream-2.” In particular, the United States and Germany stated that it is in the interests of both Kyiv and Europe to continue the transit of Russian gas through Ukraine after 2024. At the same time, the White House opposed this all the time during the construction of the pipeline and imposed sanctions on the companies involved.
According to the document, Germany pledged to use “all available levers” to promote the extension of the transit agreement for up to ten years. In particular, it was mentioned about the appointment of a special envoy to support these negotiations to start them no later than September 1, 2021. Germany also promised to seek sanctions against Russia if it uses energy as a “weapon.”