European Union leaders intend to ask the European Commission to limit gas prices during a meeting in Prague on October 6.
EU leaders intend to ask European Commission to limit gas prices
STEPANAKERT, OCTOBER 4, ARTSAKHPRESS: The EU leaders will ask to urgently work out steps, including to propose effective solutions to reduce prices by limiting gas prices, according to a draft statement seen by Reuters.
EU countries have previously approved a series of measures, including taxes on windfall profits, to mitigate rising energy bills for consumers. But nations are divided on the next step, which leaders will discuss at a meeting in Prague.
Most of the 27 countries want an EU-wide cap on gas prices. But a number of countries, especially Germany, the largest consumer of gas in Europe. Berlin fears that a price cap could mean nations will struggle to attract fuel from competitively priced global markets this winter.
The European Commission has yet to propose a cap and has expressed concerns about the idea, suggesting instead that countries consider narrower options, such as limiting the price to Russian gas only.
But while the EU seeks additional measures to contain the energy crisis, countries are moving forward with national measures that make rich countries spend far more than poor ones.
Speaking at an event in Sofia on Saturday, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen stressed the need to avoid distorting the EU single market. Without a pan-European solution, we seriously risk fragmentation. Therefore, it is crucial that we maintain a level playing field for everyone in the European Union in the single market, she said.
Last week, Germany unveiled a 200 billion euro plan to protect companies and households.
EU leaders will also ask the Commission to negotiate lower prices with non-Russian gas suppliers and develop a new price benchmark for liquefied natural gas, according to a draft statement, which could be amended before being adopted Friday.