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    EU - MEPs call for joint purchases of gas to respond to the scale of electricity prices


    October 6, 2021 - CE Noticias Financieras

     

      BRUSSELS, 6 (EUROPA PRESS)

      The main groups in the European Parliament have called Wednesday for a common response to the escalation of energy prices with measures such as the promotion of joint purchases of gas, the creation of a strategic reserve of this resource and the examination of possible cases of manipulation in the electricity market.

      On behalf of the European People's Party (EPP), the Romanian MEP Siegfried Muresan, said that his group would support "concrete actions at European level" such as the creation of a common gas reserve or the launch of joint purchases to reduce the dependence that the block has on imports from abroad.

      The 'popular' spokesman has also urged to "identify" if in recent months there has been any "manipulation" in the electricity market by private or public actors. "If this has happened, we must take action," he said, and then ended his speech by stating that the EU must also provide economic support to the most vulnerable citizens.

      "We must negotiate together as we have done with the purchase of vaccines," defended the leader of the Socialists and Democrats (S&D;), who also proposed the creation of a gas platform "for the distribution of resources according to the needs" of Member States, in line with the initiative proposed by the Spanish Government.

      García also stressed the need to adopt measures to "curb speculation" in the European emissions trading system (ETS) and "review the rules for the operation of electricity markets to facilitate the incorporation of cheaper energy sources such as renewables". "If the rules of the game are set at European level, the remedies must also be European," he said.

      French member Christophe Grudler spoke on behalf of the liberal group Renew Europe, who also proposed "strengthening gas storage" which is currently "very insufficient in many countries" and "launching a joint purchase of gas" along the lines of the centralised purchases of vaccines during the pandemic.

      The Belgian Philippe Lamberts stressed on behalf of the Greens that the ecological transition will not be successful "without social justice" and that the EU "cannot accept that once again it is the most vulnerable who have to pay the lion's share of the burden". "If there is a lesson to be learned, it is that we must accelerate our transition to renewable energies", she said.

      On the other hand, Joëlle Mélin, MEP for the far-right Identity and Democracy group, accused the EU itself of "provoking unprecedented speculation in the price of gas", while Beata Szydlo, representative of the European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR), denounced that neither the European Commission nor the Parliament "have got down to work" and that explains the prices.

      Finally, the leader of the group The Left, Manon Aubry, denounced the fact that energy, which "should be a common good", has become "something to speculate on and distribute profits". "We propose a total blockade of energy prices", she added.

      BRUSSELS ANALYZES PROPOSALS

      Before the interventions of the parliamentary groups, the Commissioner for Energy, Kadri Simson, assured that the Community Executive "is analyzing" the proposals launched by some Member States, such as the joint purchase of gas or the creation of reserves of this resource.

      The Estonian also stated that the EU "needs to invest in flexibility and storage to integrate more variable renewable energies into the electricity market". "We need gas markets that work well in the transition to integrate more and more renewable gases," he said.

      In this sense, he recalled that Brussels plans to propose a reform of the gas market at the end of the year and will also review in this context issues related to storage and security of supply.

      In any case, Simson insisted that the "drastic" increase is due to a "combination of factors". Although expectations point to this being a temporary situation, he added, the price of gas "will remain high during the winter and should gradually decrease from the spring of next year," he explained.

      The head of Energy of the European Commission has also claimed that the current scenario "has little to do with climate policies" of the EU and "a lot to do with dependence on imports of fossil fuels and their price volatility".

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