The German government is unlikely to oppose the EU Commission's intention to include Russian coal in the next package of sanctions.

Berlin's idea of ​​flatly rejecting energy sanctions because of the allegedly catastrophic consequences for the German economy seemed clumsy from the start and was not suitable for creating confidence in the German position at home or abroad.

At the beginning of the week, the old German corporatism quickly formulated a back-up line, with the Federal Ministry of Economics, business and the trade unions turning primarily against an embargo on Russian natural gas.

The adverse consequences of a quick halt to imports from Russia are likely to be greatest for the German economy in the case of gas.

There is no alternative to diversification

Deliveries from Russia are not limited to gas, they also include coal and oil.

Here the German dependency is now significantly lower than with gas and accordingly the government can show greater flexibility.

And so it shouldn't come as a surprise if, following a coal embargo in Europe, an embargo on Russian oil is soon to be the subject of intense discussion.

Of course, these sanctions also have a direct impact on the German economy.

But it must not be forgotten that the German economy will suffer even more in the long run if Putin is not stopped quickly.

The automotive industry, for example, is experiencing a sharp decline in production because the war events have affected the import of cables from the Ukraine.

Irrespective of the course of the war and the further discussions about sanctions, the German economy must work resolutely to reduce its dependence on Russian energy supplies.

Not everything will happen quickly, and greater diversification will likely cost money as well.

But there is no alternative, because there can be no return to the old form of cooperation with Putin's Russia.

The faster this is accepted, the more dynamically the German economy can start into the future.