Nord Stream sues insurers in London over 2022 pipeline blasts

Gas leak at Nord Stream 2 as seen from the Danish F-16 interceptor on Bornholm

LONDON (Reuters) -Nord Stream is seeking more than 400 million euros ($436 million) from its insurers over explosions in 2022 which ruptured pipelines designed to transport Russian gas to Germany, court filings show.

Nord Stream AG names Lloyd's Insurance Company and Arch Insurance (EU) DAC as defendants in its lawsuit, which was filed at London's High Court last month.

Switzerland-based Nord Stream confirmed in an email there is a contractual dispute in London commercial courts between itself and insurers of the pipeline system.

"However, we ask for understanding that we are not in a position to provide any detailed comments to the legal proceedings," Nord Stream's communications team said.

Court filings state that Nord Stream's current preliminary estimate of "the costs to dewater and stabilise the pipeline, to undertake a full repair and to replace the lost gas inventory" is between 1.2 billion and 1.35 billion euros.

Nord Stream's lawsuit also says one of the pipelines looked "mangled and deformed" in one area where it had been damaged, but "appeared smooth and to have been cut" in another.

Lloyd's declined to comment. Arch did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The lawsuit focuses on the explosions in September 2022 that ruptured the Nord Stream 1 and Nord Stream 2 pipelines. Sweden – which last month dropped its investigation – and Germany have both found traces of explosives relating to the incident, suggesting it was a deliberate act.

Russia and the West, at loggerheads over Moscow's invasion of Ukraine, have pointed fingers at one another. Each has denied any involvement, and no one has taken responsibility.

Nord Stream in its lawsuit is suing all insurers subscribing to its offshore operating all-risks policy as well as its excess all-risks policy.

According to court documents, Nord Stream is suing Lloyd's on its own behalf and as the representative of others subscribing to policies issued by insurers including Munich Re, which declined to comment.

($1 = 0.9160 euros)

(Reporting by Sam Tobin and Kirstin Ridley, additional reporting by Vera Eckert; Editing by Nia Williams)