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Gas prices. Application for sharp increases in gas prices in Moldova, a state of energy emergency in Hungary

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In Moldova, large increases in gas prices are in the pipeline. The gas operator Moldovagaz has asked the state regulator to increase the tariff for consumers by around 60 percent in order to be able to pay the Russian supplier Gazprom, Moldovagaz chief Vadim Ceban announced on Wednesday. Meanwhile, the Hungarian government is introducing an energy emergency.

Gas supplies to Europe remain constrained and energy costs have risen sharply since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Vadim Ceban, who is quoted by the Reuters Agency, wrote on Telegram that he had asked for a price increase for households from 18.6 lei to 29.48 lei ($ 6.03).

On Wednesday, the Hungarian government announced a ban on the export of fuels, such as gas. – It’s time for the government to announce state of emergency in the energy sector – said the head of the office of Prime Minister Gergely Gulyas at a press briefing after the meeting of the government of Viktor Orban, devoted to problems with energy supplies in Europe.

In announcing this decision, Gulyas stressed that over the past year electricity prices increased 5 times and gas 6 times. According to him, the government’s 7-point plan will provide the country with enough energy for the winter and at the same time allow it to maintain state subsidies for utility prices for households.

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Hungary is introducing an energy emergency

According to the plan of the Hungarian government, domestic gas production will be increased from 1.5 billion cubic meters to 2 billion m3. According to Gulyas, Hungarian gas tanks, which have a capacity of 6.33 billion cubic meters, are currently 44 percent full, which is enough for three months.

The Reuters agency recalled that under the contract with Gazprom, signed last year, Hungary receives 3.5 billion m3 of gas annually via Bulgaria and Serbia, and another 1 billion m3 via a pipeline from Austria. The contract with the Russian company is to be valid for 15 years. Minister of Foreign Affairs Peter Szijjarto previously said that the raw material from Russia meets 85 percent. the country’s gas demand.

Gulyas said gas supplies to Hungary are uninterrupted so far, and any future restrictions, if needed, would ultimately affect households. Szijjarto will be tasked with buying additional gas. The head of Hungarian diplomacy said on Wednesday that additional 700 million m3 of this raw material could be purchased by the beginning of the heating season. However, he did not provide details with whom Hungary is talking about additional deliveries.

In addition, the government will ban the export of energy carriers and firewood, and at the same time the extraction of hard coal will be increased. In addition, the government will make efforts to extend the lifetime of the operating units of the Paksu nuclear power plant.

Gulyas stressed that against the protracted wars in Ukraine and economic difficulties, every Hungarian should take care of energy security, for example by saving energy. Therefore, anyone whose gas or electricity consumption exceeds the national average will have to pay more. The state-subsidized prices for utilities for the population will be kept only up to the level of the average consumption in the country. The average annual electricity consumption in Hungary is 2,523 kWh, and gas is 1,728 cubic meters.

Fuel price limit in Hungary

The government in Budapest also decided to extend the current limit until October 1 fuel prices. However, Gulyas emphasized that the situation was changing rapidly and that the government would react in the event of an emergency.

Hungary introduced a fuel price cap in mid-November 2021 in order to reduce the financial burden on the population in a situation of rising inflation; in June this year. was 11.7 percent. Currently, the price of 95-octane petrol and regular heating oil may not exceed 480 forints (PLN 5.66) per liter. Drivers of cars with foreign registration plates are excluded from the possibility of purchasing fuel at a limited price.

Main photo source: Shutterstock

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