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EU nations seek joint approach to contain energy price


BRUSSELS — The European Union on Friday intensified its mission to protect the inhabitants from dramatically rising power prices that would dump tens of millions into chilly and poverty over the winter within the wake of Russia’s battle in Ukraine that’s driving up international power costs.

The power ministers of the 27 member nations gathered in an emergency assembly and had been hoping to beat the differing views on numerous proposals to maintain fuel and electrical energy costs inside the realm of the reasonably priced. They vary from windfall taxes on some firms to setting a worth cap on shopping for Russian fuel.

Officers stated it was unlikely the ministers would discover full settlement on Friday, with the implementation of a worth cap on Russian fuel among the many excellent points.

They may agree to offer liquidity help to power firms to cope with the extraordinary scenario and measures on the right way to impose electrical energy reductions just like these already agreed on fuel.

“There is no such thing as a time to attend and we’ve got to be swift and united,” stated Jozelf Sikela, trade minister of the Czech Republic, which chaired Friday’s assembly.

Regardless of the urgency, with the primary chill within the morning air in a number of northern nations asserting the onset of autumn, the ministers on Friday will solely give pointers to the chief Fee, which can current a agency proposal for the member states subsequent week.

At that time the member states will reassess once more, and the hope is {that a} agency determination will be taken by early subsequent month.

The European Fee has already referred to as for a worth cap on Russian pure fuel and is in search of a “solidarity contribution” from European oil and fuel firms which have made extraordinary income from the rise in power prices.

The power disaster isn’t solely threatening households but additionally trade, with fears energy-intensive factories could possibly be pressured to shut. EU Fee President Ursula von der Leyen stated Russia is “blackmailing” the EU with its menace to show off the fuel to the bloc. Moscow has already reduce fuel provides partially or totally to 13 EU international locations.

Russian pipeline fuel accounted for 40% of all imported fuel into Europe earlier than President Vladimir Putin ordered the invasion of Ukraine in February, however now solely accounts for 9%.

The fee believes the EU is ready for the winter, with joint fuel storage ranges at 82%; nicely forward of the 80% goal that had been set for the top of October.

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