Germany: EU to continue buying gas off Azerbaijan even though it may be from Russia

Germany sees no inconsistency in the EU’s plans to buy natural gas off Azerbaijan even though it may be of Russian origin, Russia’s RIA Novosti cites its sources the country’s Foreign and Economic Affairs ministries.

“At the moment we do not have any sanctions against Russian gas imports to the EU. We are planning to become independent from Russia’s gas. And de facto we do not import Russian gas. But there are no sanctions against this in the EU, unlike coal and oil,” RIA Novosti quotes an unnamed employee at the German Foreign Ministry.

A representative of the Economic Affairs Ministry, RIA claims, also says the EU countries “wish to become independent from Russia’s gas.”

Russia’s oil and gas giant Gazprom announced the signing of a contract with SOCAR, Azerbaijan’s state oil company, earlier. The supplies of Russia’s gas to the country started on 15 November.

“The contract is due until March 2023. The supply volume is up to 1 bill cubic metres of natural gas,” read the company’s statement.

Ursula von der Leyen, the president of the European Commission, announced on 7 September that she would suggest that the EU set up a price cap for Russia’s gas. The Kremlin said earlier that Russia would not sell its oil to countries that would introduce a price cap on its energy commodities.

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Sergey Aleksashenko, an economist, elaborates on why Western and other countries continue trade with Russia

The EU approved its eighth package of sanctions against Russia which included an oil price cap on 6 October. Germany’s chancellor Olaf Scholz said the EU did not impose sanctions on Russia’s gas deliberately. “We did not do it because we knew how many countries were dependent on Russia’s gas supplies to a far larger extent than us,” he explained.

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