Troy’s plan to control the price of Russian gas

In recent weeks, Prime Minister Mario Draghi has spoken out several times about the so-called “European ceiling” on gas prices, which is the unilateral imposition of a price cap by European countries to strengthen sanctions against Russia. One-third of European gas imports.

Tracy returned to the topic to reaffirm Italy’s position on the EU summit scheduled for the end of May, during which European leaders will discuss the issue. In an interview Courier della sera, he said At this stage of the war in Ukraine, Europe continues to finance Russia by purchasing oil and gas at prices that have “nothing to do with historical values ​​and production costs.” According to the head of the council, Europe should impose a “ceiling” on the price of Russian gas with the aim of strengthening sanctions, while at the same time reducing the impact of the same sanctions on countries that have imposed similar sanctions. : In practice, the EU should unilaterally decide to lower tariffs on gas supplies and impose its decision on Russia.

Europe, according to Draghi, needs to consolidate its market power and in the meantime begin to find other suppliers to control its dependence on Russian gas. While European countries need gas to heat their homes and open businesses, Russia also relies on remittances from Europe every day in exchange for gas.

In early April, during a press conference, Draghi he said The gas price ceiling “is a very rational thing, but it can only be done on a collective level. Europe has extraordinary market power: the only buyer with really strong market power. Not a fancy price.

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The position of the Italian government is important because Italy is one of the European countries that rely heavily on Russian gas, so the proposal to control gas prices has not been supported. Italy uses the most gas for energy production (42 percent by 2020) and imports almost all (95 percent by 2021): a large area, so far, comes from Russia, 43.3 percent. In recent years, Algeria (31 percent of imports by 2021), Qatar (9 percent), Azerbaijan (10 percent) and Libya (4 percent) were the other countries where Italy bought the most gas.

Another country that imports large quantities of gas from Russia is Germany, the richest and most influential country in the European Union. In 2021, Russian gas He represented 55% of Germany’s gas imports: Half of what Germany consumes in 2021 will come from Russia, as domestic production is very low. In Germany, natural gas plays a very important role: it is used to produce a quarter of the energy used by the country each year.

Germany has already stated its opposition to any cuts in Russia’s gas supplies, largely dependent on its economy. “It is clear that all economic ties with Russia must be severed as soon as possible.” he said In early April, German Economy Minister Christian Lindner. “But we can not change the gas in the short term. We will do more damage to ourselves than the Russians.

Although both depend on Russian supplies, the positions of Italy and Germany are the opposite: German Chancellor Olaf Scholes has repeatedly said that the immediate end of Russian gas and oil imports would be detrimental to the EU economy, while Draghi argues that a protracted war will ensue. Have a significant impact on European finance, growth and jobs.

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Russia says Russia will need gas shortages in the short term during sanctions on gas supply, practically impossible: government About two years Find alternative sources of energy, but there are more estimates for four or five years.

Moreover, many layers of the industrial world They do Pressure on the government to further limit Russian gas supplies. Last week, President Olaf Scholes met with the leaders of Deutsche Bank, Mercedes-Benz and Simens to express their concerns about the possible consequences of a gas cut from Russia.

On the other hand, the Italian government has already discovered A contract To begin with the so-called “diversification”: Italy will receive 9 billion cubic meters of gas per year from Algeria by 2024, compared to 22.6 billion cubic meters imported in 2021. The deal was formalized last week in the capital, Algiers. After the meeting between the Prime Minister Mario Draghi and the Algerian President Abdelmadzit Debon. In an interview with Courier della sera“Diversification is possible and possible in a shorter period of time than we imagined a month ago,” Drake said.

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