Federal Economics Minister Robert Habeck is campaigning for the major oil-consuming countries to join forces and jointly define a maximum price above which they will no longer buy oil.

"The rules of the markets have to change," said Habeck in a discussion at the World Economic Forum in Davos.

And: "We have to agree that we won't pay any price."

Patrick Bernau

Responsible editor for economy and "value" of the Frankfurter Allgemeine Sunday newspaper.

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The idea was publicly discussed a few days ago: At that time, Italy's Prime Minister Mario Draghi spoke about it after a conversation with US President Joe Biden.

Further negotiations are ongoing in the EU.

Such a cartel would not necessarily have to last forever.

Perhaps it would be temporary while the world reorganizes its energy flows.

So far, however, apparently not enough countries have joined the idea to make such a buyer cartel a success.

Putin and Gazprom still make a lot of money with fossil fuels, Habeck said at the forum.

Some companies also made money.

The head of the International Energy Agency, Fatih Birol, calculated: Sales in the oil and gas industry have jumped from $1.5 trillion before the crisis to $4 trillion now.

He linked the bill with an appeal to the corporations: Now they have the opportunity to show that they are serious about the energy transition.

He called on countries like Germany to introduce speed limits and to rely more on nuclear energy.

"$110 oil price is a problem for the whole world"

During the discussion, Indian Oil Minister Hardeep Singh Puri criticized the industrialized countries for driving up energy prices.

An oil price of currently 110 dollars is a problem for the whole world.

He doesn't think the world has an energy shortage.

Then he raised the question of whether the high demand for oil also had something to do with economic stimulus programs worth billions.

Without naming them explicitly, he aimed at the industrialized countries, above all the USA, which had recently decided on the largest economic stimulus program by far.

Federal Minister of Economics Habeck said that Germany is working at lightning speed to make its energy supply more independent of Russia.

In the long term, renewable energies would have to be strengthened.

Habeck spoke of four crises that exist at the same time: inflation, the energy crisis, food poverty and the climate crisis.

"We cannot solve these crises by solving just one," he said.

And: "We have to solve a problem with each other's tools."

At the same time, Habeck spoke out against deglobalization: that was the wrong word, the wrong approach.

The states must act with one another, but should not forget solidarity.

Too high energy prices weakened food production.

This not only costs lives, but also threatens international stability.