'Will take some time' Germany to keep on paying out Russia as Berlin scrambles for new gas

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Western Governments have been imposing tough economic sanctions on Russia in order to de-escalate their bloody onslaught on neighbouring Ukraine. German economist Monika Schnitzer has been questioned as to why Germany is still buying their energy from Russia. Ms Schnitzer explained that Germany has been trying to become less dependent on Russian fuels by seeking alternatives.

The German economist then went on to explain that it will take some time to build the infrastructure in order for Germany to be less dependent on Russia.

BBC Business reporter SeanFarrington said: “Why is Germany still  handing over so much money to Russia for energy?”

Ms Schnitzer told Radio 4’s Today programme: “Well the problem is that Germany is really very reliant on… Or really very dependent on Russian imports.

“Of coal, of oil, and in particular of gas, while there have been strong efforts to reduce this dependency, they’re on the way.

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“It will take some time to find alternatives and to build the infrastructure, to use these alternatives.

Mr Farrington said: “But it would be possible, to pay a lot more for energy right now and move away from that.

“Have you got a figure on how much it would cost the German economy, to actually move very very quickly on this?”

Ms Schnitzer added: “Well it’s really not that easy to move quickly because what you need are alternative supplies.

“And then you need the infrastructure to get it to where you need it.”

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Germany’s Finance minister Christian Lindner has faced criticism for refusing to cut all ties with Russia on the energy front.

Mr Lindner explained earlier this week that it is “not possible” for Germany to disconnect from the Russian gas supply currently, claiming that “we need some time”.

Discussing Russian energy before his talks with other European political heads in Brussels, Mr Lindner 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.”

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Christian Sewing, the chief executive of Deutsche Bank has warned that if Germany stops importing gas from Russia, the country could end up entering a financial recession.

Mr Sewing said: “The situation would be even worse if imports or supplies of Russian oil and natural gas were to be halted. A significant recession in Germany would then be virtually unavoidable.”

But pushback has come from other European political leaders, Poland’s Prime Minister chimed in on Marine Le Pen’s criticisms of Germany.

Accusing Germany of not doing enough, Mr Morawiecki said: “It’s Germany that is the main roadblock on sanctions.”



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