The energy ministers of the European Union (EU) have not been able to close an agreement on the limit on the price of gas purchases, which keeps the negotiation open and leaves the decision in the hands of the representatives of the Union at the summit this Wednesday and Thursday.
The countries led by Spain (Greece, Belgium, Poland, Italy or Slovenia) consider that too high a ceiling is “unaffordable”, while others refuse to revise it downwards for fear of damaging the security of supply, such as Germany or the Netherlands. The differences between the two parties have been insurmountable, so the leaders are expected to unblock the situation at the summit.
The two blocks have held at least three meetings to try to reach an agreement in parallel to the formal meeting in Brussels. Although they have tried to bring their positions closer in these meetings, in the end they have not been flexible enough to reach an agreement.
The German representatives had shown themselves willing to consult, but have finally returned to their initial position. This has caused Germany to reject any cap on gas prices. below 200 euros per megawatt hour (MWh). In fact, in the meetings that will take place this week, Berlin is expected to defend again a “hard” position regarding a high ceiling.
Europe ‘not out of the woods’
The latest proposal that was presented before 7:00 p.m. reduced the level at which the mechanism would be activated to 200 euros per MWh and also required that the price of hydrocarbons in wholesale contracts be at least 35 euros above the average price in the liquefied natural gas (LNG) market for three days.
Teresa Ribera believes that progress has been made in the negotiation
But this approach has been described as “unassumable” by the Spanish Government, a position that other States have joined. Despite everything, the Spanish vice president for the Ecological Transition, Teresa Riberabelieves that progress has been made in the negotiation, but points out that the “most delicate” point that remains open is finding the correct “balance” between the stability of the financial markets and “the price that consumers can pay”.
The energy commissioner kadri simsonhas indicated that the EU is in a “position of relative security”, but the report that the International Energy Agency shows that “Europe is not out of the woods and next year may be even more complicated than this”, so that asked the European capitals to continue advancing in measures to appease the energy crisis.