(Reuters) – Swiss-based Russian gas pipeline operator Nord Stream 2 AG has not filed for insolvency, it said on Wednesday.
“We do not confirm the media reports that Nord Stream 2 has filed for bankruptcy.
“The company only informed the local authorities that the company had to terminate contracts with employees following the imposition of U.S. sanctions on the company,” Nord Stream 2 AG said in emailed comments.
The firm, based in Zug, Switzerland, was considering filing for insolvency, two sources familiar with the situation told Reuters earlier this week, as it attempts to settle claims ahead of a U.S. sanction deadline for entities to stop dealings with it.
Separately, Zug’s cantonal economy director, Silvia Thalmann, said that process had not been activated.
“We know that Nord Stream 2 is facing enormous payment difficulties. The company has not until now filed for bankruptcy with the Zug Commercial Registry Office,” she said.
The 1,230 km (767 mile) Nord Stream 2 pipeline from Russia to Germany had not begun commercial operations as it awaited German certification. That approval process was put on hold last week as a result of the escalating Ukraine crisis.
Since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine last week, several large companies have said they will exit their Russian operations including energy firm Shell, which said it will no longer be involved in Nord Stream 2, among other investments.
Russia calls its activities in Ukraine a “special operation”.
(Reporting by Michael Shields in Zurich and Moscow bureau; editing by Jason Neely)