In the absence of a unified European strategy on energy security, Germany was merrily sourcing cheap Russian gas to enhance its global competitive advantage before the Ukraine war. Now, Moscow is making Germany (and Europe) pay the price for this over-dependence. When the 10-day “scheduled maintenance” of the Nord Stream 1 pipeline ends on 21 July, will the Russian state-controlled gas exporter Gazprom resume deliveries? Or will, to use the evocative phrase coined by commentator Constanze Stelzenmüller, a “gasectomy” be performed on Germany by President Vladimir Putin? Nord Stream 1 supplies 58 per cent of Germany’s annual gas needs. A couple of weeks ago, after Russia reduced supplies by 60 per cent, Berlin triggered the second stage of its national gas emergency plan ~ one step away from gas rationing. (Read More)
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