German Firms to Sign LNG Deals During Scholz’s Middle East Trip

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Executives traveling with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz to the Middle East this weekend will sign deals on liquefied natural gas and hydrogen, according to a senior government official.

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Scholz leaves Saturday on a two-day trip to Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and Qatar accompanied by what his spokesman described as “a high-ranking” business delegation.

The visit is the latest push in Germany’s attempt to diversify away from Russian energy, and longer-term LNG contracts and green hydrogen are a key part of that plan, said the official, who asked not to be identified in line with government briefing rules.

Scholz’s first stop will be in Saudi Arabia, where he’ll meet with the king as well as Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the country’s de facto ruler. On Sunday, he’ll be in the UAE and Qatar, before returning to Berlin in the evening.

Germany has been in “constructive talks” with Saudi Arabia about long-term LNG deals, the official said. They did not provide further details on the contracts or which companies are involved.

During the trip, Scholz will also discuss proposals for a cap on the price of Russian oil, the official said. European Union member states are pushing for a political agreement within weeks on the measure as part of a new package of sanctions to be proposed by the European Commission, people familiar with the matter told Bloomberg Friday.

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