Tomorrow, EU Energy Ministers will meet to once again discuss measures against high energy prices and in particular how to cap gas prices. The EPP Group principally supports the European Commission’s proposal for joint gas purchasing, a new price benchmark for LNG gas and default mechanisms to increase solidarity among Member States for gas sharing. We also acknowledge the Commission’s efforts to avoid any deteriorating influences by a price cap on gas markets.
“There is clearly too much fuss over short-term measures like a gas price cap. While a combination of all temporary and targeted measures will contribute to tame energy prices, these should not cover up the need for long-term solutions. With a true European internal energy market, we would not have the problems to the extent of which we are currently experiencing. We are suffering from a dramatic lack of investments in energy infrastructure, in particular missing interconnectors between Member States. Interconnections would allow more solidarity and security within Europe. Member States have long lacked the will to truly connect to their neighbours and deepen the internal energy market”, said Christian Ehler MEP, EPP Group Spokesman on energy.
“There are numerous examples of missing interconnectors, be it between France and the Iberian Peninsula, Greece and Bulgaria or Germany and Belgium. The effects of the war in Ukraine show more than ever that current levels of European energy infrastructure and interconnections are insufficient. If Member States don’t hear this wake-up call, no-one should be surprised when high prices and situations of tense supply become recurring issues. No ad-hoc market intervention is an alternative to the internal energy market. We need to assure now that the mistakes of the past are not repeated. For the rollout of hydrogen infrastructure in Europe, the necessary connections between Member States may not fall behind again. I call on the Ministers tomorrow to finally focus on the real problems of Europe’s energy infrastructure”, added Ehler.