Five European energy companies are to invest as much as €950 million (£807m) each to fund Gazprom’s gas pipeline.
ENGIE, OMV, Shell, Uniper and Wintershall have signed financing agreements with Nord Stream 2 AG, the company responsible for the planning, construction and operation of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline.
The 1,220-kilometre pipeline will have the capacity to transport 55 billion cubic meters of natural gas a year – enough to supply 26 million European households.
It will run from the coast of Russia via the Baltic Sea to Greifswald in Germany.
The five companies have each committed to provide financing for up to 10% of the total cost of the project, currently estimated at €9.5 billion (£8bn).
Each firm will provide a long term funding capacity of €285 million (£242m), while additional funds of up to €665 million (£565m) each will depend on future decisions by Nord Stream 2 AG in respect of the overall financing of the project.
Russian energy giant Gazprom remains the sole shareholder of the project.