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Germany issues ‘early warning’ of possible gas shortages as Russia threatens

Moscow said last week that it wanted to be paid in rubles, rather than US dollars or euros as per existing gas supply contracts, and threatened to cut off supplies if that didn’t happen. The Kremlin’s demand has been rejected by Germany and the G7 group of leading developed economies.

The German government said Wednesday that the country had enough gas for now, but it urged all consumers — from companies to hospitals and households — to reduce their use as far as possible with immediate effect.

“There are currently no supply shortages,” Economy Minister Robert Habeck said in a statement. “Nevertheless, we must take further precautionary measures to be prepared for any escalation by Russia.” German gas storage is currently filled to 25% capacity, he added.

The “early warning” is the first of three alert levels set out in Germany’s plan to manage gas supplies in a crisis. If the…

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