Germany courts Qatar and the United Arab Emirates for alternatives to Russian gas | Russo-Ukrainian War
Economy Minister Robert Habeck travels to Doha and Abu Dhabi as gas shortage fears grow amid Russia’s war on Ukraine.
German Economy Minister Robert Habeck said he would discuss the supply of liquefied natural gas (LNG) during a trip to Qatar and the United Arab Emirates, as he aims to reach an agreement on the hydrogen, making Germany less dependent on Russia for gas.
Russia is Germany’s largest gas supplier, according to data from the Ministry of Economy’s website. About half of Germany’s LNG imports come from Russia.
Since Russia invaded Ukraine, Habeck has launched several initiatives to reduce Germany’s energy dependence on Russia, including large non-Russian LNG orders, terminal projects to import LNG and slow the country’s exit from coal.
Habeck, before the trip began on Saturday, said the goal was “to establish a medium-term hydrogen partnership.”
“If we don’t get more gas next winter and if deliveries from Russia were to be cut off, we wouldn’t have enough gas to heat all of our homes and run all of our industry,” Habeck said. on Deutschlandfunk radio.
He will be accompanied by around twenty representatives of German companies, many of them from the energy sector.
He also wants to discuss “short-term” LNG supply and “give the companies that secure gas supply in Germany the political framework to become independent of Russian gas, topics that couldn’t be higher on the agenda.” ‘political agenda’.
More broadly, the European Commission is also working on plans to phase out the European Union’s dependence on Russian gas, oil and coal within five years.
Habeck, also minister for climate affairs, recently visited another Norwegian gas power plant, as well as the current world‘s largest exporter, the United States.
Berlin has been criticized for opposing an immediate embargo on Russian energy supplies as a way to stifle a major source of Moscow’s foreign revenue.
But Germany believes a boycott could cripple the German economy and society with huge energy price hikes and lead to shortages.
With Russia under fire for its war in Ukraine, Habeck conceded in an interview with ARD television on Friday that when it comes to energy policy, a moral dimension “doesn’t really exist”.
Habeck also said Friday it was imperative to ensure a steady flow of supply, but stressed the country needed to accelerate its transition from conventional natural gas to green hydrogen.