Germany unveils $64 bil. package to fend off soaring inflation

Germany has announced a major support package to help residents cope with rising prices of energy and other goods.

The assistance comes amid a sharp drop in the supply of Russian natural gas.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said, "Russia is no longer a reliable energy supplier. That's part of the new reality. The German government prepared itself for this scenario."

Scholz said 65 billion euros, or about 64 billion dollars, in financial aid will be allocated to help people and businesses deal with soaring inflation.

The package will include one-time payments to pensioners and students. It will also cover partial reductions in electricity bills.

Scholz stressed that the measures will come ahead of the winter heating season.

A plunge in the amount of Russian gas flowing through the main Nord Stream pipeline has triggered a surge in energy prices in Germany and other European countries.

The supply crunch followed Russia's invasion of Ukraine in February.

The situation was recently compounded by Moscow's decision to keep Nord Stream closed. Russian officials cited a problem discovered during an inspection.