Windgas CEO

Europe and Gazprom Need Each Other

Gerhard Koenig at a gas plpant source DPA
Gerhard König shows where the gas needs to go.
  • Why it matters

    Why it matters

    European gas production is expected to greatly decline in coming years. As more natural gas is imported, intermediaries like Wingas shoulder the risk of purchasing gas over the long term and selling it on trading markets or directly to customers.

  • Facts

    Facts

    • BASF subsidiary Wintershall sold its half stake in Wingas to Gazprom in a politically controversial swap.
    • Russian premier Dmitry Medvedev recently complained about a “new Cold War” during a security conference in Munich.
    • About 30 percent of natural gas in Europe comes from Russia.
  • Audio

    Audio

  • Pdf

Gerhard König, chief executive of Germany’s largest wholesale gas company Wingas, rarely can be found at the company’s new headquarters in Kassel. He’s too busy traveling, especially to Russia, where he flies to Moscow at least once every two weeks.

Since early this year, the world’s largest producer of natural gas, Russian energy giant Gazprom, has been the sole owner of Wingas. The BASF subsidiary Wintershall sold its half stake in the joint venture in a politically controversial swap

Today, Mr. König sees himself as mediator between West and East, with a core task ofexplaining Europe to his Russian shareholders.

 

Handelsblatt: Were you actually in the Kremlin on your inaugural visit?

Gerhard König: No, my business partners are at Gazprom, not the government.

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