EU countries at odds over possible gas price cap By Reuters
Commodities 29 minutes ago (Sep 28, 2022 08:20AM ET)
(C) Reuters. Model of natural gas pipeline and EU flag, July 18, 2022. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration
By Kate Abnett
BRUSSELS (Reuters) – European Union countries were at odds on Wednesday over whether to cap gas prices in the bloc, with France, Belgium and 13 other states stepping up their call for the move opposed by Germany and others.
Eyes were on the EU executive European Commission, which was expected to present an analysis on the feasibility of the bloc capping gas prices during a meeting of diplomats from the 27 EU member states on Wednesday.
The Commission’s document would not include legal proposals, sources said, but rather present an assessment of options countries could use to tackle high gas prices, which are stoking record inflation across the bloc and threatening a recession.
A group of 15 countries including France, Italy, Spain and Poland urged the Commission on Tuesday to propose a price cap on all wholesale gas transactions to help rein in surging prices.
On Wednesday, Belgium’s energy minister suggested the measure could be designed as a “flexible price corridor”.
“To tackle the high gas prices, it is crucial to address the price volatility without jeopardising security of supply,” Tinne Van der Straeten said in a tweet.
But with Germany, the Netherlands and Denmark among those arguing that a gas price cap would harm efforts to contain Europe’s energy crunch, there were doubts as to whether any potential proposal could win sufficient support to become law.
The 15 countries behind the letter would not have a big enough majority to approve a new EU law without support from others – setting up a potential clash among member states if the Commission were to propose a gas price cap in future.
Those reluctant say capping prices could leave countries struggling to secure supply in competitive international markets this winter – concerns also raised by the Commission itself.
Discussions on possible price caps will continue at a Friday meeting of EU energy ministers, who are also set to approve a package of measures proposed by Brussels last week to contain surging energy prices, including windfall profit taxes on energy firms.
Russia has slashed gas deliveries to Europe following its invasion of Ukraine. Russia’s two Nord Stream pipelines, built to carry gas to Europe, were damaged this week, with EU suspecting sabotage as leaks spewed greenhouse gas emissions into the Baltic Sea.
EU countries at odds over possible gas price cap
By Paul Carrel and Stine Jacobsen BERLIN/COPENHAGEN (Reuters) -Any intentional disruption to EU energy networks would meet a “robust and united response”, its top diplomat said,…
By Cassandra Garrison MEXICO CITY (Reuters) – Hass avocado imports from Mexico, the main ingredient of guacamole – a favorite Super Bowl snack – are now worth $4 billion, up from…
By Erwin Seba HOUSTON (Reuters) – U.S. oil refinery utilization rates, a measure of how operators view future fuel demand, could top 90% next quarter for the third consecutive…
(C) 2007-2022 Fusion Media Limited. All Rights Reserved.
Risk Disclosure: Trading in financial instruments and/or cryptocurrencies involves high risks including the risk of losing some, or all, of your investment amount, and may not be suitable for all investors. Prices of cryptocurrencies are extremely volatile and may be affected by external factors such as financial, regulatory or political events. Trading on margin increases the financial risks.Before deciding to trade in financial instrument or cryptocurrencies you should be fully informed of the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, carefully consider your investment objectives, level of experience, and risk appetite, and seek professional advice where needed.Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. The data and prices on the website are not necessarily provided by any market or exchange, but may be provided by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual price at any given market, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Fusion Media and any provider of the data contained in this website will not accept liability for any loss or damage as a result of your trading, or your reliance on the information contained within this website.It is prohibited to use, store, reproduce, display, modify, transmit or distribute the data contained in this website without the explicit prior written permission of Fusion Media and/or the data provider. All intellectual property rights are reserved by the providers and/or the exchange providing the data contained in this website.Fusion Media may be compensated by the advertisers that appear on the website, based on your interaction with the advertisements or advertisers.