Germany’s economy minister warns that Russia could further delay gas supplies


German Economy and Climate Action Minister Robert Habeck attends the weekly cabinet meeting at the German Chancellery in Berlin, Germany, July 1, 2022. REUTERS/Michele Tantussi

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FRANKFURT, July 2 (Reuters) – Germany is expected to face the possibility that Russia will continue to suspend gas flows through the Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline beyond a scheduled maintenance shutdown this month, said Economy Minister Robert Habeck on Saturday.

It could be a rational move on Moscow’s part to further reduce or completely halt natural gas deliveries and it would fit a pattern of actions so far to try to destabilize Europe.

“You see a pattern and it can lead to this scenario,” Habeck told the weekly Die Zeit in a webcast interview.

“It could be rational, keep global prices and energy prices high in Germany and destroy unity and solidarity in the country. Excluding this is nothing anyone in their right mind can do at this point,” said The Minister. Germany last month moved into the second stage of a three-tier emergency gas plan after Russia cut deliveries through the Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline. It’s a step before the government rations fuel consumption. Read more

The Nord Stream 1 pipeline, which supplies gas from Russia to Europe under the Baltic Sea, is due to be closed for annual maintenance from July 11-21.

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Reporting by Ludwig Burger; Editing by Mike Harrison

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