German leader visits the UAE and Qatar as part of ongoing Gulf tour
During a two-day visit to the Gulf region, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz planted a tree at a mangrove park in the United Arab Emirates on Sunday as a symbolic nod to environmentalism. Scholz was primarily in the region to secure new fossil fuel supplies and forge new alliances against Russia.
In response to the invasion of Ukraine, Germany is attempting to reduce its reliance on Russian energy imports while preventing a deficit during the upcoming winter.
The German government has installed terminals to allow the import of fuel by ship, in addition to looking for additional natural gas sources to do this.
Scholz met with UAE President Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan after touring the Jubail Mangrove Park in Abu Dhabi to sign an agreement on energy cooperation and chat about the nation’s hosting of the United Nations climate negotiations in 2019.
The Abu Dhabi National Oil Company’s first shipment of liquefied natural gas will be delivered to German utility company RWE this year, the company said on Sunday. Separately, RWE will collaborate with Masdar, a company located in the UAE, to investigate other offshore wind energy projects, the company announced.
Scholz took a flight from Abu Dhabi to Qatar to meet with the emir, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, and talk about their bilateral ties, regional problems like the tensions with Iran, and the impending World Cup that the Gulf state will be hosting.
German officials pointed out ahead of the trip that Scholz is one of many Western leaders who have met with the Saudi crown prince recently, including former U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson, U.S. President Joe Biden, and French President Emmanuel Macron, among others.
German officials stated that all energy agreements will consider the nation’s intentions to become carbon neutral by 2045, which will require a switch from natural gas to hydrogen produced with renewable energy in the next decades.
They asserted that because of its vast lands that are appropriate for generating inexpensive solar energy, Saudi Arabia is regarded as a particularly good generator of hydrogen.