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New Sanctions Against Russia May Reinforce China's Competitive Edge, German Businessman Says

© AFP 2023 / WANG ZHAOA general view shows the skyline of a central business district in Beijing
A general view shows the skyline of a central business district in Beijing - Sputnik International, 1920, 01.02.2022
BERLIN (Sputnik) - Possible economic sanctions from the United States and European allies against Russia over Ukraine would create tangible benefits for Chinese companies, Chair of the Eastern Committee of German Business Oliver Hermes said on Tuesday.

"New economic sanctions, either on Nord Stream 2, or Russian financial sector will lead to greater losses for both sides. Preemptive 'competition through-and-through' creates an extreme uncertainty, reinforces China's competitive edge, and further brings Russia and China closer in terms of security policy," Hermes said in an article shared by the committee.

The committee emphasized that Hermes expressed his personal opinion.
Hermes also stressed that the globally-oriented economy of Germany opposes any form of disintegration.
"Not only in trade, energy and finance, but also in security, we need a European cohesion, which means a pan-European security architecture that includes Russia and Ukraine," he said, calling for new Helsinki talks on security, economy and climate change.
Speaking of Russia's energy supplies, Hermes said that Germany needs Russian gas, stressing that more than 40% of its oil and gas imports originate from Russia. He pointed out that the past several months have demonstrated that a heavy dependence on natural gas persists in the European energy sector.
"In the medium term, we will need more, not less, gas imports from Russia. Both Nord Stream 2 and the capacity of the Ukrainian gas pipeline network are necessary to reliably supply Europe with natural gas and, in the long term, with hydrogen until the ultimate transition away from fossil fuels occurs," Hermes added.
The precarious situation around Ukraine has worsened in recent weeks, with NATO deploying additional troops near the Russian border, anticipating escalation. The controversy was compounded by growing threats from the US and European allies to impose economic sanctions on Russia in the event of a military incursion into Ukraine.
The European Council announced last week that Moscow would face "massive consequences and severe costs", if its invades Ukraine. The United Kingdom said it would adopt new legislation to tighten its sanctions regime and target more Russian companies and individuals, while US senators claimed to be working on "devastating sanctions that ultimately would crush Russia's economy."
Russia has repeatedly denied having any intention of invading Ukraine, reiterating its right to move forces within its own territory, and raising concerns over an increased NATO military presence in Eastern Europe.
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