Putin has lost in the gas blackmail of Europe - German Vice-Chancellor
Vladimir Putin has lost in his gas blackmail, said the German vice-chancellor, who expressed cautious optimism about his country's energy supplies during a visit to Norway.
This was reported by The Gardian.
Russia's war in Ukraine caught Berlin at a vulnerable moment because it was too dependent on natural gas supplies through the Nord Stream 1 pipeline and failed to build infrastructure for alternative supply channels, said Robert Habeck, Germany's deputy prime minister and economy minister.
The problem for Germany, or central Europe, is that half of our eggs were in Putin's basket," the Greens politician said at a joint press conference with Norwegian Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Støre in Oslo, "and he destroyed them.
however, in early 2023, Germany will be able to replace the discontinued Russian supplies of gas, oil and coal by "one-third" through other channels, such as rapidly built liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminals and increased imports from Norway, currently the largest supplier of gas in Europe.
Norway's Energy Minister Terje Aasland announced on Thursday that Oslo will again be able to supply Europe with 122 billion cubic metres of natural gas this year, an increase of 8 percent over 2021.
Stressing that the energy situation in Germany remains "very tense and difficult", Habek expressed optimism at the same time.
I can now say that the storage capacity in Germany is around 90 percent full, we will make it through this winter and prices are going down.
Since Central Europe has experienced a relatively mild winter so far, there is "reasonable probability" that storage facilities will not be completely empty by the end of the cold season, he said.
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