The US and Germany want to conclude a deal by August to blunt Moscow’s geopolitical gains once the controversial Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline is finished, with the two sides exploring ways to shore up Ukraine’s energy sector and deter Russian aggression through the threat of sanctions.
The agreement, which some officials hope to have ready for Chancellor Angela Merkel’s visit to Washington next month, could see the countries commit to bolstering Ukrainian infrastructure and compensating it for transit fees that will be lost because the pipeline bypasses the country. Germany may also commit to supporting the “Three Seas” plan to boost Eastern European cooperation on energy and transportation.
According to Bloomberg, possible options for a deal were spelled out by several people familiar with the negotiations, all of whom asked not to be identified detailing private discussions. Even if the elements hold, the outcry from members of the US Congress could be fierce because such an agreement would be similar to proposals that have failed to deter Russia in the past.
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