German FM: ‘We want to reduce Moldova’s reliance on Russian energy’

Steagul Republcii Moldova si cel al Uniunii Europene, 14 octombrie 2016. Inquam Photos / Adel Al-Haddad

Germany, France and Romania will explore ways of reducing Moldova’s reliance on Russia for gas, Germany’s foreign minister said on Tuesday.

„Together with our Moldovan partners, we want to assess how we can help reduce Moldova’s dependency on Russia economically, financially, and with a view to energy needs, and to strengthen the country’s resilience,” Annalena Baerbock said at a donor conference in Berlin.

In a statement after the conference, leaders said they would assist Moldova in consolidating its energy security, including for gas supply diversification and strengthening of gas connectivity inside Moldova, as well as for an enhanced connectivity to the European energy market, building on the recent connection of Moldova to the European Network of Transmission System Operators for Electricity known as ENTSO-E.”

Russian gas giant Gazprom in February threatened to cut gas supplies to Moldova unless the sides settle a historical debt by May 1. Moldova gets about 17% of its gas from Russia.

EU members Germany, France and Romania on Tuesday hosted a Moldova Support Conference called the “Bridge of Solidarity.”

Leaders outlined “Russia’s ongoing illegal aggression against Moldova’s eastern neighbor, Ukraine, and expressed Moldova’s most urgent needs.”

“We remain committed to strengthening Moldova’s resilience and share its burden in providing shelter and hospitality to Ukrainian refugees,” the statement said.

Moldova has opened its borders for almost 400,000 people and is currently hosting about 100,000 of them.

Leaked contract reveals Russian gas giant Gazprom can cut supplies to Moldova unless historic debt is settled by May


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