EnBW CEO Frank Mastiaux
Photo: Marijan Murat / dpa
According to the energy company EnBW, it has developed a procedure for paying for Russian gas imports that is said to be compliant with the sanctions against Russia.
"The mechanism is in place," said EnBW boss Frank Mastiaux of the "Süddeutsche Zeitung".
The energy group also includes the Leipzig gas importer VNG, which has two supply contracts for Russian gas.
There is now a procedure to process the payments, Mastiaux told the newspaper.
A test was positive.
"Of course, the business has become much more complicated because we now have to process payments through a construct of accounts since Russia has required payment in rubles," Mastiaux said.
You continue to pay in euros in accordance with the sanctions.
The conversion into rubles at Gazprombank is to take place "afterwards".
Russian President Vladimir Putin had ordered gas deliveries to be paid for in rubles.
The European Union sees this as a subsequent change to existing contracts and rejects it.
Companies complying with Russian demands risk being prosecuted for violating EU sanctions.
In this situation, the Italian energy group Eni recently declared that the company would open an account in euros with Gazprombank “in the coming days” – and one in rubles.
Eni can pay in euros, the Russian bank then converts it into rubles.
In Germany, Economics Minister Robert Habeck declared on Monday that the EU requirements for gas payments would be met.
However, it remains unclear whether German importers will also open ruble accounts with Gazprombank for this purpose.
Gas storage as a buffer
Against the background of the sanctions against Russia, Mastiaux warned of bottlenecks in the event of a delivery stop.
Some things can be cushioned by deliveries from Norway and the Netherlands, and the gas storage facilities could also serve as a buffer: "But we should be prepared for a possible gas shortage in Germany as a precaution."