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Germany pledges energy solidarity in bid to cut Russian oil
Energy

Germany pledges energy solidarity in bid to cut Russian oil

06.05.2022
Germany supports the European Commission’s plan of a phased-in import ban
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz
Photo credit: Kenzo Tribouillard/AFP

Germany is ready to support eastern European nations in their efforts to wean themselves off Russian energy to secure broader support for sanctions targeting the country’s oil and gas sector, Chancellor Olaf Scholz said Thursday.

Europe’s largest economy is pushing ahead with plans to substitute Russian oil and build up infrastructure to import liquefied natural gas, Scholz told reporters after talks with Czech Prime Minister Petr Fiala in Berlin.

“If we take this step, we must also show our solidarity and readiness to help those countries that don’t have direct access to the Northern Sea or the Baltic Sea,” Scholz said, adding that he had offered support on energy to the Czech Republic.

Both countries will hold more talks on the Czech Republic potentially using some of Germany’s future LNG terminal capacity, Fiala said.

The Czech government is in talks with the European Union and its member states to win an exemption from the proposed import ban on Russian oil for two or three years so that Prague can boost pipeline capacities and secure crude elsewhere. Hungary and Slovakia have demanded similar exemptions.

Germany supports the European Commission’s plan of a phased-in import ban, rating the proposed transition period of six months sufficient to arrange alternative supplies. Still, Economy Minister Robert Habeck has warned that Europe’s largest economy could be hit by supply disruptions.

Defence cooperation

Germany and the Czech Republic also agreed to cooperate on defence, Fiala said. Under the plan, Germany will help replenish the Czech Republic’s military arsenal while the former communist nation will provide weapons to Ukraine.

“I am glad that we found an agreement very quickly on such an important issue,” Fiala said. “I can say that it involves heavy military equipment.”

©2022 Bloomberg L.P.


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