BREXIT Britain will not fare as bad as Germany in the looming energy crisis after a reported gas squeeze from Vladimir Putin, an expert has told Express.co.uk.
The EU now also faces gas shortages and could be at risk of gas shutdowns and rations as prices skyrocket to record highs – with German media putting the blame on Brexit. But it comes after Gazprom, the state-owned Russian gas company, reported decreased resources flowing into Europe following a spat over the implementation of EU law along the new Nord Stream 2 pipeline.
But Mike Foster, the CEO of Energy and Utilities Alliance has told Express.co.uk that while the UK does import some Russian pipeline gas via the Netherlands, it may be able to soften the blow of the crisis due to its diverse range of gas sources.
He said: “Norway is a strong partner.
“There is no risk with Norway as a trading partner.
“We get a lot of our gas from Norway and if we didn’t, we would certainly be in a worse position as we would be more reliant on the middle east and Russia.
“Germany has to have a different outlook with its relations with Russia because they are going to be more dependent than we are.”
Norway, which is not a member state of the EU, is the main supplier of both crude oil and natural gas for the UK.
In 2020, some 11.7 million metric tonnes of crude oil and 1.4 million metric tonnes of natural gas were imported from Norway.
This year, as in previous years, Russia accounted for less than 1 percent of UK supplies, according to reports.
Meanwhile, a 2019 analysis showed 41 percent of the EU’s imports of natural gas came from Russia, and just 16 percent from Norway.
Latest estimates place Berlin’s reliance on Russian gas as “about 40 percent” – and that number is set to rise with Nord Stream 2.
But while Germany might be more severely affected by gas shortages, the UK has also faced problems due to surging gas prices.
The Government has stated that it is “prepared for the worst” after nearly 1.5 million customers were hit in only two weeks by energy firms going bust.
Both Avro Energy and Green announced on Wednesday that they stopped trading.
And wholesale gas prices have surged by 250% since the beginning of the year, which also posed a threat to UK food supplies.
Two large fertiliser plants in Teesside and Cheshire which produce carbon dioxide (CO2) were also forced to shut as a result of rising prices.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson has reassured Britons that this “will get better as the market starts to sort itself out, as the world economy gets back on its feet”.