Germany, India and a very special energy transition

India has traditionally maintained good relations with Russia. The country is thirsty for energy and wants to switch to renewable energy. Germany should help with this. 6th Indo-German government consultation begins in Berlin on Monday – burdened by the Ukraine war

Complete the sixth round of Indo-German government consultations. The fifth round is in November 2019. The Chancellor is still Angela Merkel. The world is different. When Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrives in Berlin with most of his cabinet next Monday for the sixth Indo-German intergovernmental consultation, only one thing remains: India, a giant state and subcontinent, is starving for energy. Its 1.4 billion people need electricity, heat and water – especially considering the current level of heat in India with temperatures of 50 degrees and above. So Chancellor Olaf Scholz and Prime Minister Modi, as well as some of their ministers, will sign several agreements for energy partnerships. Germany wants to help and support India in the country’s sustainable development and switch to renewable energy. Because in Berlin everyone is aware that major global challenges like climate protection, the fight against global warming and exiting the era of fossil fuels will hardly succeed if densely populated India is not a part of it.

Of course, Scholz and Modi will also talk about the Ukraine war. India has long had good relations with Russia and also buys weapons and missile systems from there. The federal government has noted very well that India was among a group of 35 states that did not join the emergency session of the UN General Assembly in New York in early March in its (legally non-binding) condemnation of Russia’s war of aggression. Like China, India also abstained from calling for the immediate withdrawal of troops from Ukraine. Recently, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov was in New Delhi looking for a new buyer for Russian gas. After all, Moscow must somehow compensate for the reduced gas supply caused by the break with Europe. India will be a lucrative contract partner with its huge energy needs. Lavrov praised India for their neutral stance in the Ukraine war. “We appreciate that India looks at the situation as a whole and not unilaterally,” Lavrov said.

Scholz will test the mood in a conversation with Modi. And then decide on the invitation. It remains unclear whether Germany, which holds the G7 presidency this year, will invite India as a guest nation to the G7 summit in late June in Elmau, Upper Bavaria. So far, the Modi government has not followed Western sanctions against Russia, but rather has increased oil imports from Russia. But that is exactly what India wants to do in partnership with Germany for sustainable development and a shift to renewable energy.

Cheryl Tenny

"Thinker. Food advocate. Incurable coffee enthusiast. Communicator. Proud student. Zombie buff. Tv fanatic. Extreme troublemaker."

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