December 9, 2022

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EU gas emergency plan, from 15% reduction to the same reduction for all, that’s why Italy opposes

On the A proposal submitted by the European Commission To reduce gas consumption in the 27 EU countries, a strategy that would develop after the war in Ukraine and in the context of further supply cuts from Russia, some European governments are holding back. Italy is among them. At this point, the goal is to reach agreement on the energy package by Tuesday, July 26, when energy ministers arrive in Brussels. Time is running out, we need to find the right balance, but there is no shortage of spaces.

Negotiations continue

Koreber is scheduled to meet again on Monday 25, the body made up of the “permanent representatives” of each member state, that is, the ambassadors to the European Union of the countries concerned, who express the position of their governments. Under the Czech presidency, negotiations will be resumed. All this is likely to lead to a change in the text.

Southern opposition (and Italy)

The Commission’s proposal does not particularly like the countries of the South (from Spain to Portugal to Greece, but also Poland, though it does not belong to that geographical area, is against it) and Italy, in a letter signed by the owner of a moth, Roberto Cingolani, putting his pen to paper His opposition: the goal is to reduce gas consumption by 15% and, above all, the fact that it is the same for everyone. Regarding the first aspect, for the existing government to Dealing with current affairs The cut that Brussels indicated will weigh, not a little: minus 8.3 billion cubic meters of gas. Second, the observation made is that a linear cutoff will not take into account the energy mix that characterizes different countries. Reliance on Russia, filling stocks, work done to reduce consumption in recent years, is the reason, they are not the same for all member states, and therefore the share of the reduction can not be.

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Risks of binding reduction in consumption

The third point in the draft regulation proposed by the European Commission that has been criticized is that which provides for the Commission’s power to declare a state of alert. The board would like to have it for itself. On the other hand, on the part of the countries, there are concerns that once a state of alert is declared, the reduction in gas consumption in the European Union will become mandatory and no longer voluntary.

In the obligatory viewfinder equal for all

For Italy, the same rule cannot be applied to everyone. “It is understood that solidarity must remain at the heart of European action – the minister emphasized in the letter – a coordinated response based on the principles of unity, solidarity, efficiency, proportionality and flexibility will be required.”