Germany says it is no longer reliant on Russian energy

Germany no longer depends on Russian imports for its energy supply, the country’s finance minister has told the BBC.

Christian Lindner said Germany had completely diversified its energy infrastructure since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine last year.

Following the invasion, Russia turned off the gas taps to Europe, leading to fears of blackouts this winter.

But Germany had found new sources of energy, Mr Lindner said.

“Yes, of course Germany is still dependent on energy imports, but today, not from Russian imports but from global markets,” he said.

Germany previously imported around half of its gas from Russia and more than a third of its oil.

But Russia cut off the country’s gas supply in August, while Germany halted Russian oil imports at the start of the year.

In its race to find alternate sources of energy, the country has reopened coal-fired power plants, delayed plans to shut down its three remaining nuclear power plants, and pushed to increase capacity to store natural gas imported from other countries such as Norway and the US.

At the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland, Mr Lindner pointed to the speed with which a new liquefied natural gas terminal had been built in Germany – in a record of around eight months, he said. More infrastructure investments were planned, he added.

“This is only [one] example of the enormous change in German policies,” he said.

“We have understood that we have to foster our competitiveness after the era of Chancellor [Angela] Merkel. That era was focused on, well, strengths of the past, and now we are developing strengths of the future,” he said.

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