Construction of Nord Stream's EUGAL Pipeline Compressor Site

Photographer: Krisztian Bocsi/Bloomberg

Germany won’t need additional gas flows this season, giving Chancellor Angela Merkel and Russian President Vladimir Putin another reason to bide their time on the controversial Nord Stream 2 pipeline.

After two warm winters and the coronavirus pandemic, demand for the fuel used for heat and power generation is sagging across the continent. Supplies remain abundant, with U.S. cargoes of liquefied natural gas returning to Europe. Benchmark gas prices remain below their 10-year average at the start of the period for peak consumption.

Those metrics may inform how Putin and Merkel respond to Poland’s decision last week to slap a record $7.6 billion fine on the pipeline’s sponsor, Gazprom PJSC. Berlin was silent on the matter, and Russia said only that Poland aligned itself with the U.S. on the issue. For now, there’s no reason to rush ahead with the long-delayed 1,230-kilometer link under

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(Bloomberg) — Vaccines alone won’t be enough to fight the pandemic, Novartis AG Chief Executive Officer Vas Narasimhan said as Europe battles a virus resurgence.

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Narasimhan in an interview emphasized the role of medicines as many people will likely still fall ill and require treatment in coming months. German Chancellor Angela Merkel warned against virus complacency.

“We’re risking everything that we’ve achieved in the last few months,” Merkel told lawmakers in Germany’s Bundestag. “We can’t let nationwide restrictions threaten huge economic and emotional losses once again.”

In the U.S., seven former Food and Drug Administration commissioners appealed for the agency to decide on vaccine approvals free of political interference and an early study showed Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Inc.’s experimental antibody cocktail may help reduce virus levels in patients.

Key Developments:

Global Tracker: Cases top 33.4 million; deaths exceed 1 millionNew York region sees 40% bankruptcy surge, braces for moreU.K.

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  • Richard Grenell, the former US ambassador to Germany, said at the Republican National Convention on Wednesday that he saw President Donald Trump “charm” German Chancellor Angela Merkel.
  • When asked about the comment at a press conference on Friday, Merkel looked mystified by the suggestion, then declined to comment.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel looked mystified when she was asked whether President Donald Trump had “charmed” her.

Richard Grenell, the former US ambassador to Germany, made the suggestion during a speech at the Republican National Convention on Wednesday.

When asked about the comment during a Friday press conference, Merkel squinted at the reporter and said, “He did what?”

When the reporter added that Grenell had said Trump “charmed” Merkel, Merkel paused and then smiled. People at the press conference started laughing, and Merkel joined in.

She then declined to comment, saying she didn’t speak about

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By GEIR MOULSON, Associated Press

BERLIN (AP) — Germany has a duty to do what it can to help get to the bottom of the apparent poisoning of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, Chancellor Angela Merkel said Friday, but she argued that the issue shouldn’t be linked to the fate of a German-Russian gas pipeline project whose completion the U.S. wants to prevent.

Navalny, an opposition politician and corruption investigator who is a longtime foe of President Vladimir Putin, has been at Berlin’s Charite hospital for nearly a week after falling ill on a flight back to Moscow from Siberia on Aug. 20. The hospital said earlier this week that tests on Navalny indicate he was poisoned.

Navalny’s allies insist he was deliberately poisoned and say the Kremlin was behind it, accusations that Russian officials have rejected as “empty noise.” On Thursday, the Russian prosecutor general’s office said a preliminary

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Companies have sent an urgent letter to the German Chancellor pleading with her to pull back from taking action days after she threatened to tighten rules as coronavirus infections surged. The Federal Association of Medium-Sized Enterprises has said “excessive protection against infection” should not take priority over the protection of the economy.

The group warned a second COVID-19 shutdown would hit businesses harder than the first lockdown ordered in spring.

In the letter to Ms Merkel and ministers, the federation said further disruption to businesses would wreak havoc on medium-sized businesses across Germany.

Many companies have used up their financial reserves and would have to “throw up their hands” in the event of another shutdown, the letter said.

The federation said industries are still recovering from the far-reaching effects of the first lockdown.

It said medium-sized firms bore the brunt of the restrictions together with the self-employed.

It said: “Entire

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