Merkel: Moscow has been a "reliable energy supplier", no regrets
Germany's former chancellor does not regret the natural gas deals she struck between Berlin and Moscow.
Germany's former chancellor, Angela Merkel, asserted that she does not regret signing natural gas deals with Russia during her 16-year-long term, defending her argument by saying that Moscow has for long been a "reliable energy supplier" and has offered lower prices than others.
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Merkel noted that Berlin has been looking to drop using coal as an energy source, and Russia's gas was the best available option for this. Berlin has been looking to "arrive at a CO2-free forms of energy."
“From the perspective of that time, it was very rational and understandable to obtain pipeline-bound gas from Russia, which was cheaper than LNG [liquefied natural gas] from other parts of the world,” Merkel said at a Lisbon conference. “Even during the Cold War, Russia was a reliable energy supplier.”
Merkel oversaw two major gas contracts between Moscow and Berlin: Nord Stream 1 and Nord Stream 2; two pipelines that pass through Ukraine and Poland.
Under the reign of newly-elected Chancellor Olaf Scholz, the Nord Stream 2 pipeline never rose into effect, and its certification was put to a halt days before Russia launched its military operation in Ukraine in February.
Last month, the pipelines were blown up; investigations are underway. A NATO mine destroyer was found at the site of the explosion.
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As the conflict brews, LNG exports coming from the United States have been on a skyrocketing increase in recent months as Europe is forced, by its elite, towards moving away from reliance on Russian energy supplies.
"It was right to accelerate the fight against climate change at the end of my term," Merkel said, addressing criticism of Germany's dependence on Russian energy.