German opposition leader warns of ‘gas distribution war’ within EU

According to the head of the German CDU party, German Economy Minister Habek should draw up a gas distribution schedule agreed with the EU countries

Due to gas shortages between European countries, a “war over gas” may arise distribution,” said the leader of the opposition German Christian Democratic Union party. (CDU) Friedrich Merz in an interview with NOZ.

“It is likely that there will be serious conflicts in the distribution of [gas] within the EU.— RBC]— like in 2015 and 2016 when there was a refugee crisis,— Merz said (quote from Welt).

In his opinion, German Economy and Climate Minister Robert Habeck needs to draw up a gas distribution schedule agreed with the EU countries.

At the same time, Merz called for not make such public statements, after which Russia can stop gas supplies to Europe. “If Russia behaves in accordance with the contract, deliveries will resume after repair work,” approves the head of the CDU.

On July 11, Russia will suspend the flow of gas through the Nord Stream pipeline. It will be closed for almost two weeks for planned preventive maintenance— until July 21st. The gas pipeline operator Nord Stream AG said that the schedule and work plan had been agreed in advance with the company's upstream and downstream gas transportation partners.

However, the German authorities fear that the Russian side will then stop supplying gas to Germany. In particular, such concerns were expressed by Minister of Economy Habek. The head of the Federal Network Agency of Germany, Klaus Müller, said that the regulator is considering various options, most of them are “unpleasant”; and provide for a shortage of gas in winter.

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The Kremlin claimed that Moscow strictly fulfills its obligations on fuel supplies. “Russia is very, very careful about its reputation, towards the reputation of a responsible supplier,” — said Dmitry Peskov, press secretary of the Russian president.

In mid-June, Gazprom reduced the volume of pumping through the Nord Stream gas pipeline; to Germany, first up to 100 million cubic meters. m of fuel per day from 167 million cubic meters. m, and then— up to 67 million cubic meters m. In “Gazprom” attributed this to the “untimely return of gas pumping units from repair by Siemens”. Siemens, in turn, explained that the turbines for Nord Stream manufactured by Canada, one of the engines is being repaired in Montreal, and the return is not possible due to Canadian sanctions.

Siemens later, speaking about the reduction in gas supplies to Germany, said that this was due to politics, not with gas pipeline engines. The Russian Foreign Ministry denied the political motives for stopping supplies.

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