Scholz to visit Saudi as Germany seeks energy supplies

AFP , Monday 19 Sep 2022

Chancellor Olaf Scholz will visit Saudi Arabia and meet Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman as part of a Gulf trip, his spokesman said Monday, as Germany rushes to secure energy supplies.

Olaf Scholz
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) speaks during a news conference after his meeting with Georgia s Prime Minister Garibashvili at the Federal Chancellery on Wednesday, Sept. 14, 2022 in Berlin. AP


Scholz, whose two-day trip next weekend will also take him to Qatar and the United Arab Emirates, becomes the latest Western leader to meet with the crown prince.

The german president will be accompanied by a business delegation when he visits Saudi Arabia on Saturday, where he will meet with the crown prince and -- if his health permits it -- King Salman, government spokesman Steffen Hebestreit said.

On Sunday, Scholz will head to the UAE and meet with President Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al-Nahyan, and in the afternoon will hold talks with Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani.

German Economy Minister Robert Habeck already visited Qatar and the UAE in March in an effort to find alternatives to Russian gas, which Germany has traditionally depended on heavily.

Russia's decision to cut off supplies has triggered an energy crisis in Europe, with consumers and businesses facing soaring bills as winter approaches.

*This story was edited by Ahram Online

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