It will be expensive for companies

An this Sunday they are likely to run empty, the stricken gas pipelines North Stream 1 and Nord Stream 2. At least that’s what the Danish Energy Agency is counting on, and they should know: all four leaks found are near the Danish Baltic Sea island of Bornholm. Only when all the gas has escaped should experts from the affected economic zones of Denmark and Sweden examine the leaks, which are said to be up to 200 meters in size.

Bernd Freytag

Business correspondent Rhein-Neckar-Saar based in Mainz.

Philip Krohn

Editor in business, responsible for “People and Business”.

Then hopefully not only the question of who is responsible for the explosions will be clarified. The companies, financiers and insurance companies affected may then also get clarity as to whether the pipelines are really what many suspect anyway: billion-dollar investment ruins.

Those involved are still silent. The state-owned Russian energy giant Gazprom – sole owner of Nord Stream 1 and majority owner of Nord Stream 2 – has not commented on this for days. The operating companies, both with tax-efficient headquarters in Switzerland, have also gone underground.

Loans are written off

On the one hand, Nord Stream 1, which went into operation in 2011, is affected. Costs: 7.4 billion euros. 30 percent of them have Gazprom, the German corporations Wintershalland Eon as well as the Dutch Gasunie and the French Engie as own funds. 70 percent came as a loan from 30 banks. In ten years, more than 430 billion cubic meters of gas have flowed from Siberia to Lubmin from the two 1,200-kilometer-long pipelines, in purely mathematical terms half of Germany’s consumption.

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