US Energy Secretary Rick Perry has reportedly said that a bill would soon be passed to impose sanctions on the $12bn Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project.

The proposed bill would place restrictions on the companies involved in the project and would be introduced in the ‘not too distant future’, Reuters reported citing Perry.

The Nord Stream 2 project seeks to transport up to 55 billion cubic metres of Russian natural gas to the key European Union (EU) market via a new natural gas pipeline through the Baltic Sea.

Perry was quoted by Reuters as saying: “The opposition to Nord Stream 2 is still very much alive and well in the US.

“The US Senate is going to pass a bill, the House is going to approve it, and it’s going to go to the President and he’s going to sign it, that is going to put sanctions on Nord Stream 2.”

Last week, a group of Republican and Democratic US senators introduced a bill that seeks to impose targeted sanctions against vessels used to construct Nord Stream 2 pipeline and other Russian energy projects. Trump criticised the project at a Nato summit in 2018 and questioned Germany for its reliance on Russian gas.

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Nord Stream 2 AG, which is implementing the project, is owned by Russian state-owned gas company Gazprom. The project is funded by Uniper, Wintershall, Shell, OMV and Engie under financing agreements reached in April 2017. These five European companies will be responsible to provide long-term financing for 50% of the total project cost.