The emir of Qatar will meet with President Biden at the White House on Monday to discuss Afghanistan as well as contingency plans to provide natural gas to Europe in the event of a Russian invasion of Ukraine, Axios has learned.
Why it matters: Europe’s reliance on Russia for 40% of its natural gas is undermining Biden’s attempts to coordinate “massive” sanctions to be imposed from both sides of the Atlantic if Russia invades. The White House wants Qatar to help ensure European countries can enforce tough sanctions without risking an energy crisis.
- Senior administration officials confirmed on Tuesday that the U.S. is in talks with countries and companies around the world — including Qatar, which has the world’s third-largest reserves — to “mitigate against price shocks” by temporarily surging production or reallocating supplies.
- The discussions on Qatar providing liquefied natural gas are preliminary, but the proposal is expected to be advanced in the meeting between Biden and Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, according to a source familiar with the details of the visit.