President Trump was right to criticize Germany during the NATO summit opening as being “captive to Russia” because of how much energy it imports from the country. While Trump claims that Germany imports 70% of its natural gas from Russia, a deal that has enriched its former Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder, who now works for Russia's Gazprom, the EU statistics agency Eurostat puts the figure higher, at up to 75% of Germany’s total gas imports. Germany spends billions a year importing Russia's natural gas, and the fact that Germany will soon receive even more of it after a new pipeline between Russia and Germany opens in two years. This confirms Trump’s concern about Russia having control over Germany, reports George Martin for Daily Mail, especially considering that NATO members are paying to protect each other from Russia.
President Trump criticizing Germany for being “captive to Russia” because of the amount of energy it gets from the latter shows that Trump has misread the situation, argues Palko Karasz in The New York Times. President Trump’s assertions of just how much energy Germany is getting from Russia is not as black and white as he claims. First, Germany is no different than the rest of the EU, which also relies on Russia for its main supply of crude oil and natural gas. Trump's claim that Germany gets 60-70% of its energy from Russia is inaccurate because it represents the total amount of energy needs it imports from any foreign source, including Norway and the Netherlands. Import figures alone don't show reliance on a particular natural gas supplier. Plus, in northwestern Europe's gas trade, it's complicated to determine where the natural gas molecules coming of one particular country are used.