Russia nears gas shutdown in Europe as Germany rejects claims it can’t fulfil contracts


Russia’s energy giant Gazprom has said it cannot fulfil its gas contracts with Europe.

Bloomberg | Bloomberg | Getty Images

LONDON — Russia’s energy giant is threatening to send less gas to Europe — but Germany, one of its main importers, has rejected the idea.

Majority state-owned Gazprom said Monday that due to unforeseeable circumstances it is not in a position to comply with gas contracts with Europe.

Germany’s energy firm Uniper confirmed to CNBC that Gazprom had claimed “force majeure” on its supplies. Force majeure, a legal term, occurs when unforeseeable circumstances prevent one party from fulfilling its contractual duties, in theory absolving them from penalties.

“It is true…


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