Moldova’s recent energy crisis with Russia’s Gazprom has prompted the government to seek guarantees that it can avoid similar situations in future.
Romanian state-owned Transgaz company pipelines. Photo: EPA/Robert Ghement
Moldova’s vice-Prime Minister, Andrei Spinu, called on the Romanian authorities, during his visit on Thursday and Friday to Bucharest, to store gas reserves for Moldova to avoid future energy crises like the one the country experienced as a result of disputes with Russia’s Gazprom in October.
In the meantime, Moldova will modify its legislation to store gas outside the country, which it cannot do currently.
Neighbouring Romania has a high gas storage capacity. Also, the newly built Iasi-Chisinau pipeline linking the two countries can easily transport up to 2 billion cubic meters of gas per year out of about 3 billion cubic meters that Moldova uses yearly together with the breakaway region of Transnistria.
Before going to Bucharest, Spinu said Moldova should treat gas reserves the same as wheat or fuel oil reserves. “That is why, in the gas law that we are now promoting, which will soon go to parliament, we are establishing an obligation to have these state reserves for at least two of the winter months,” Spinu told Jurnal TV. He added that once Moldova changes its legislation, it will reserve about 300 million cubic meters of gas.
“I’m going to Romania, and a topic of discussion will be reserving capacity for gas stocks. There is availability from both our neighbours – Romania and Ukraine,” Spinu said.
Romania has meanwhile said storing gas for Moldova is not a problem.
“Of course, we can store gas for Moldova. Our warehouses are not at full capacity. It is a matter of trade. If there is a demand, the gas can be delivered anywhere,” the head of Romania’s Transgaz company, Petru Văduva, told news and analysis portal Veridica.ro
Moldova depends 100 per cent for its gas on Russia’s Gazprom, and in October was forced to sign a new five-year deal with the Russian energy giant.
The price of gas in Moldova, according to Spinu, about 450 US dollars for one thousand meters in November, will drop to about 400 US dollars in December, Spinu said.
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