Merkel slated over Germany’s ‘extra-dependency’ on Russia
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Germany has been slammed by Ukraine and allies in the European Union for resisting calls to issue an immediate ban on Russia’s oil and natural gas exports. The recent reports of Russian atrocities in Bucha have renewed calls for sanctions on Russian energy – the country’s biggest export. However, Germany’s dependence on Russian gas means the country could face major blackouts.
Europe’s largest economy is particularly dependent on Russian natural gas.
Fifty five percent of its natural gas, 52 percent of its hard coal and 34 percent of its oil from Russia.
This January alone, Berlin purchased €2.6billion (almost £2.2billion) worth of oil and gas imports from Russia.
GB News host Darren Grimes slammed former German Chancellor Angela Merkel for her decision to greenlight the Nord Stream 2 pipeline.
The pipeline flows from Russia to Germany under the Baltic Sea, and Moscow claims it would double the amount of gas flowing into the EU.
Mr Grimes tweeted: “What a legacy Merkel & her pipeline has left Germany: as world reels from latest horrors in Ukraine, the EU is preparing to ‘hit Moscow with tougher sanctions.
But Germany is resisting pressure from Kyiv and European allies for an immediate embargo on the import of Russian gas.’”
For months, Germany dragged its feet on cancelling the pipeline, despite pressure from the US.
The US warned the pipeline would leave Berlin too dependent on Moscow.
This comes as German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier expressed his regret for supporting the Nord Stream 2 pipeline for years, calling it a “mistake”.
Mr Steinmeier, a Social Democrat who served as Foreign Minister under Chancellor Angela Merkel, said that Russian President Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine made him to rethink what Germany had got it wrong.
He said: “My adherence to Nord Stream 2 was clearly a mistake.
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“We were sticking to a bridge in which Russia no longer believed and which other partners had warned us against.”
On Monday, Germany’s Finance minister Christian Lindner once again refused to cut energy ties with Russia, warning it is not possible to do so yet.
Mr Lindner said that it is “not possible” for Germany to cut Russian gas supply now, adding “we need some time”.
Speaking ahead of his talks with EU colleagues in Brussels, he said: “It is clear we must end as quickly as possible all economic ties to Russia.
“We must plan tough sanctions, but gas cannot be substituted in the short term.
“We would inflict more damage on ourselves than on them.”
Mr Lindner suggested that instead of outright issuing a ban on all energy imports from Russia, the bloc could consider gradually banning oil, natural and coal separately.
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