German energy company Uniper has abandoned plans to build a liquefied natural gas (LNG) import terminal in the German port of Wilhelmshaven.
By Martin Chomsky

Berlin is taking another step to reduce its dependence on gas from Russia. After Germany’s largest company opted out of importing Russian LNG, the government will now buy the fuel from Qatar.

Germany’s Economy and Climate Protection Minister Robert Habeck discussed the exact volumes and timeframe of LNG deliveries to Germany during a visit to Qatar, but did not disclose any details. Germany does not have a single LNG terminal, so Qatari will have to flow to terminals in neighbouring countries such as the Netherlands, Denmark and possibly Poland.

Habeck explained that Germany is looking to diversify its gas supply. “We need diversification, which means that one country or one region does not replace another,” he said.

Before the Russian invasion  of Ukraine, more than 50 percent of the gas consumed in Germany came from the Russian Federation. In future, Germany would like each supplying country to account for no more than 20 percent of imports. Then, in the event of an emergency, supplies can be sourced elsewhere quickly and without loss.

In early March, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said that the country had started buying gas to the exclusion of Russia, but did not specify where the supplies were coming from. On 16 March, Germany’s largest energy company E.ON discontinued its relationship with Russian gas suppliers.