Russia says ‘short-sighted’ EU has only itself to blame for energy crisis – POLITICO

Russian Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak said on Saturday that the European Union is to blame for the energy crisis.

The global gas supply crisis has sent consumer bills soaring across Europe, driving up inflation and accusations, most recently by International Energy Agency chief Fatih Birol, that Moscow is exacerbating the problem by withholding imports.

Novak said Russia had fulfilled its long-term contracts with the European Union. He added that the crisis was due to “the short-sighted policy of the European Union and the European Commission, which for many years deliberately moved away from long-term contracts, and shifted the energy sector towards reducing dependence on it by shifting from long-term contracts to define those.”

About 40 percent of Europe’s natural gas imports come from Russia, but the flow into the bloc has fallen this year by about a quarter.

Novak said Russia had “huge resources” and could increase its supplies to Europe. But this requires stable decades to encourage investment in production. “We handed over a lot to Germany, Turkey and other countries that chose their sizes,” he said.

“Wrong planning and short-term energy policy are a headache for European politicians who are trying to pass it on to others,” he added. Novak was speaking to Russian public television and TASS reported the comments.

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