Lithuania's Kreivys, other EU ministers to try to tackle problem of gas prices

  • 2022-10-25
  • BNS/TBT Staff

VILNIUS – After EU leaders last week asked the bloc's energy ministers and the European Commission to come up with concrete decisions on a temporary price cap on gas used to generate electricity, Lithuania's Dainius Kreivys and his EU counterparts may try to tackle the task on Tuesday.  

The Lithuanian energy minister is taking part in a meeting of the EU Transport, Telecommunications and Energy Council (Energy) in Luxembourg.

EU leaders last Friday instructed the bloc's energy ministers and its executive body to submit concrete decisions on a price cap on gas used for electricity generation, including a cost-benefit analysis, as well as on a "temporary dynamic price corridor on natural gas transactions".

Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda has described the leaders' agreement in principle to introduce a gas price cap and limit wholesale gas prices as "a political signal" for the EU's energy ministers who "will try to find solutions filling [our decisions] with very specific content". 

However, experts interviewed by BNS believe that the Commission will not yet have concrete proposals on a price cap ready for Tuesday's meeting, but they do not rule out that the bloc's ministers may discuss the issue. 

On Tuesday, the ministers are expected to exchange views on the Commission's proposals, tabled last week, on "enhancing solidarity through better coordination of gas purchases, exchanges of gas across borders and reliable price benchmarks". 

The Commission a week ago proposed "a new emergency regulation to address high gas prices in the EU and ensure security of supply this winter". 

"This will be done through joint gas purchasing, price limiting mechanisms on the TTF gas exchange, new measures on transparent infrastructure use and solidarity between Member States, and continuous efforts to reduce gas demand", the EU's executive body has said in a press release.  

On Tuesday, the ministers are also expected to discuss proposals for a directive and a regulation on common internal market rules for renewable and natural gases and hydrogen, and a proposal for a directive on the energy performance of buildings.

These proposals are part of the "Fit for 55" package of measures that aim to put the EU on the path to climate neutrality by 2050.

At the meeting, Lithuania will share information on the importance of ensuring nuclear safety at Belarus' Astravyets nuclear power plant according to recognized EU safety levels.