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31.07.2017

Trump effect? Germans would prefer to have natural gas from Russia than liquid gas from the USAforsa survey: Germans very clearly against expanding the US sanctions against Russia / Three-quarters of Germany’s citizens believe that the USA’s own economic interests are behind the new sanction proposals. / Clear priorities for the natural gas provision: natural gas must be affordable and securely available / Germans consider Norway, Canada and Russia to be particularly reliable energy suppliers

Berlin. A clear majority of German citizens reject the USA’s planned expansion of its economic sanctions against Russia. Whereas half the Germans surveyed support a further diversification of the natural gas provision, only 6 percent want more imports of American liquefied natural gas. These are the results of a representative survey conducted by the forsa opinion research institute. forsa interviewed more than 1000 German citizens on behalf of Wintershall.

The vast majority of Germans (83 percent) reject the planned increase in economic sanctions, which would also restrict the activities of German and European companies. Accordingly, 86 percent concur with the criticism of the planned sanctions expressed by German and Austrian politicians, while only a small minority (7 percent) consider the criticism to be exaggerated. Only a few give credence to the USA's argument that the sanctions are a response to Russia’s possible interference in the US presidential elections. More than three-quarters (77 percent) of the respondents believe that in reality the USA is attempting to bolster its own economic interests in the European natural gas market. 

For more than 80 percent of the German citizens, the top priorities for the natural gas provision are its affordability and security of supply. Diversified suppliers and transport routes (50%) are also considered relevant. However, only 6 percent want to import less natural gas from Russia and instead import more American liquefied gas. Just under a quarter (24 percent) would like countries that have previously benefited from gas transport revenues to also benefit in future from transit revenues.

Norway enjoys considerable confidence as an energy supplier 

62 percent of the respondents consider Norway to be the most reliable partner for offsetting the decline in natural gas production in Europe. The country is followed by Canada (46 percent) and Russia (34 percent). Relative to comparable older surveys relating to trustworthiness, the USA has dropped down the rankings and is currently only considered by 13 percent of Germany’s citizens to be a reliable energy supply country after Brazil and Argentina (18 percent each), Mexico (17 percent) and the Middle East and the Caspian region (16 percent each). This means that the USA is just ahead of Iran (9 percent), Iraq and North Africa (5 percent each). In November 2013, 50 percent of the German pubic still considered the USA to be a reliable energy supplier.

“In a comparable survey conducted in March this year, almost a quarter of Germans still considered the US to be a reliable energy supplier. This share has halved in only 3 months. This is a clear indication of the German public’s critical perception of the current US policy under President Trump,” explains Professor Manfred Güllner, founder of the forsa institute.

Wintershall Holding GmbH, based in Kassel, Germany, is a wholly-owned subsidiary of BASF in Ludwigshafen. The company has been active in the extraction of natural resources for 120 years, and in the exploration and production of crude oil and natural gas for over 85 years. Wintershall focuses on selected core regions where the company has built up a high level of regional and technological expertise. These are Europe, Russia, North Africa, South America, and increasingly the Middle East region. The company wants to expand its business further with exploration and production, selected partnerships, innovation and technological competence. Wintershall employs about 2.000 staff worldwide from 50 nations and is now Germany’s largest, internationally active crude oil and natural gas producer.

Wintershall. Shaping the future.

Contact: Michael Sasse