Baerbock on oil imports: “Will be at zero by the end of the year”

Status: 04/20/2022 18:01

Germany will no longer import Russian oil from next year. Foreign Minister Baerbock promised that after consultations in Riga. She assured the Baltic States of further military support.

By the end of the year, Germany intends to completely stop importing oil from Russia. Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock (Greens) said this after consultations with her counterparts from Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania in Riga. “That’s why I’m saying here clearly and unequivocally: Yes, Germany is also completely phasing out Russian energy imports,” explained Baerbock.

“We will halve oil by the summer and be at zero by the end of the year. And then gas will follow, in a common European roadmap – because our common exit, full exit with the European Union, is our common strength,” said the minister. “We must urgently end our Russian energy dependency.”

Mistakes in energy policy

Baerbock admitted mistakes made by Germany in dealing with energy supplies from Russia. “What we need to do more than ever is end our energy imports from Russia once and for all,” she said. “We made mistakes in this area but we cannot turn back the clock now, we cannot undo it.”

Security in Europe means reducing dependence on Russia, especially in the energy sector. “We all want to phase out the gas supplies, better today than tomorrow,” said Baerbock. She attested to the fact that the Baltic states had pursued a policy at an early stage that largely reduced their dependence on Russian gas.

EU coal embargo

The government in Kyiv accuses Germany of financing the Russian war against Ukraine by importing oil, gas and coal. The EU countries had already decided on a coal embargo against Russia last week. By the end of the year, Federal Economics Minister Robert Habeck (Greens) also believes it is possible to be “virtually independent” of Russian oil. In the case of gas, his ministry only considers this possible “until mid-2024”.

Baerbock agrees to help Balten

Baerbock promised the Baltic republics further military support from Germany. “If more is needed, we will also do more here in the Baltic States,” said Baerbock. On NATO’s eastern flank, not only the security of the Baltic States is being defended, but the security of all of Europe. “Germany will make the contribution that is needed here on the ground,” explained the minister.

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