Confirmation in recent days that President Donald Trump is considering imposing sanctions on the Nord Stream 2 (NS2) pipeline project from Russia to Germany will be of interest to LNG exporters as they consider which markets to target. The booming U.S. LNG industry has already suffered a blow thanks to the trade war with China, which would be expected to be a major buyer of U.S. gas under other circumstances. As a result, exporters—primarily on the Gulf Coast—are increasingly seeking other markets as a second wave of LNG project construction begins in the U.S.

Nord Stream 2 is being developed by Russia’s state-owned Gazprom, with financial backing from Germany’s Uniper and Wintershall, Austria’s OMV, France’s Engie and Anglo-Dutch super-major Royal Dutch Shell. Opinion is divided in Europe on the pipeline, with some—particularly Nordic and Baltic—countries concerned that it would increase the continent’s dependence on Russian gas. But the project enjoys considerable support in Germany,

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