Media reports Austria possibly to stop Russian gas shipments by 2028

(MENAFN) Austria is taking bold steps to eliminate its dependence on Russian energy imports within the next few years, according to reports citing a draft legislation unveiled by Austrian Energy Minister Leonor Gewessler. The plan aims to diversify the country's energy sources and reduce reliance on Moscow amidst ongoing geopolitical tensions and restrictions on Russian gas supplies to the European Union (EU).

While European Union sanctions on Russia do not directly target gas imports, disruptions in Russian supplies have been witnessed due to various factors, including sanctions and the sabotage of Nord Stream pipelines in September 2022. Gewessler's proposed legislation seeks to address Austria's heavy reliance on Russian gas, which reached a peak of 98 percent of imports in December.

The draft legislation, if approved, would require significant changes to Austria's energy policies and infrastructure. It includes provisions to break long-term contracts with Russian gas supplier Gazprom and diversify gas imports from other sources. The proposed amendments aim to accelerate Austria's transition away from Russian gas, with the goal of achieving zero imports from Russia by 2027.

Gewessler has reportedly presented the bill to the ruling Austrian People's Party (ÖVP), led by Chancellor Karl Nehammer, for consideration. The proposed legislation underscores Austria's commitment to enhancing energy security and reducing dependence on Russia, aligning with broader European Union efforts to diversify energy sources and strengthen resilience against geopolitical risks.



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