Short-term measures sought to contain any new energy crisis

Energy minister Kostas Skrekas, who believes that recent European Commission proposals to further counter the energy crisis are on the right track but remain too timid, intends to call for firmer, more immediate action aimed at containing any new crisis at tomorrow’s Energy Council of EU energy ministers.

The energy minister is expected to express support of Brussels’ approach at tomorrow’s Energy Council but also underline major challenges faced by Europe, especially next winter, when, according to many analysts, a sharp rise in energy demand will not be able to be covered by existing LNG supply levels, and, as a result, bring about a new round of sharp price rises.

In a recent report, Goldman Sachs reminded that the structural deficit in European gas balances caused by the interruption of Russian gas supply has not yet been addressed.

Any sharp increase in energy demand during the lead-up to next winter, when Russian gas quantities that filled European energy storage facilities last year will have to be covered by the LNG market, could, according to Goldman Sachs, double current wholesale gas prices back up to levels of at 100 euros per MWh, as supply remains limited.

International projects currently being developed to boost global LNG supply are not expected to emerge and offer results before 2025.

Greek officials are seeking the establishment of a new European fund that could provide state guarantees for CfDs and other possible measures included in the European Commission’s set of proposals, such as hedging.

Athens believes that, without some form of support, prospective benefits of measures proposed by the European Commission will be limited to EU member states possessing fiscal leeway and marginalize the rest.