(Montel) Germany has already started to cut back on Russian gas imports but a further reduction to 10% by 2024 will require a “major effort”, Germany’s ministry of economy said on Sunday.
The minister’s comments come as a number of prominent German analysts and researchers have urged an immediate embargo on Russian gas despite the economic fallout.
Imports of Russian gas had fallen from 55% last year to 35% in mid-April and could drop to 30% by the end of the year, and by mind-2024, the share could shrink further to 10%, the ministry added.
Increasing LNG capacity would play a key role, Berlin said, adding that Germany aims to gradually increase LNG import capacity to 33bcm by 2024. The planned terminal in Brunsbuettel could contribute a further 8bcm from 2026.
In 2021, Russian gas exports to Germany totalled 46bcm.
However, savings in gas consumption, the development of a hydrogen economy and a faster expansion of renewables were still necessary for independence from Russian natural gas, the ministrysaid.
"An accelerated energy transition is the best way [to achieve] an affordable, independent and secure energy supply in the future," Habeck said.
Away from oil
Germany had already reduced Russian oil imports from 35% last year to 12%.
All oil companies in Germany – with the exception of Russia’s Rosneft – would be able to work without Russian oil supplies, and a total stop is "realistic by late summer", the ministry said.
Germany would support a gradual, EU-wide oil embargo on Russian oil, Germany’s foreign minister Annalena Baerbock said late on Sunday.
EU energy ministers are due to meet later on Monday to discuss a potential ban on Russian oil imports and how to deal with the cut in gas supplies to Poland and Bulgaria.