German econ min stresses potential for German-Russian trading cooperation in energy transition
Russia will continue to be an important trading partner also in a future that gradually substitutes fossil energy sources with renewables, Germany’s economy and energy minister Peter Altmaier has said at a the German-Russian Resource Conference in Potsdam. “Russia is blessed with resources and Germany has to import nearly all of what it needs,” Altmaier said, adding that this constellation offered “a great opportunity for cooperation which we are determined to continue.” The German economy minister stressed that Russia had been a reliable supplier of natural gas for over half a century and that this was “not going to change.” He said Germany’s energy transition, the Energiewende, meant that the country’s natural gas supply will increase during a “long” transition period in which the fossil fuel with relatively low carbon emissions will be an important bridge technology. As European gas production is set to decline, projects like the controversial German-Russian pipeline Nord Stream 2 but also the construction of a shipping terminal for liquefied natural gas (LNG) would ensure a diversified supplier network to cover growing demand. Altmaier said the debate over German-Russian resource trade “should not be reduced to energy alone,” arguing that trade in key materials for the Energiewende, such as lithium for batteries or nickel for wind turbines, had huge growth potential as well.
See the CLEW article Putin and Merkel meet to find solution on gas pipeline Nord Stream 2 factsheet Germany’s dependence on imported fossil fuels for background.