Russia’s decision to halt gas supplies to Poland and Bulgaria is an attempt to divide the European Union and create panic to raise gas prices on spot markets, former Energy Minister Razvan Nicolescu told Agerpres.
“Putin’s decision to stop supplying natural gas to Poland and Bulgaria is an attempt to divide the EU without creating a major impact on Russia’s economy and is severely affected by sanctions. In addition, he wants to create panic with an impact on spot prices,” said Nicolescu.
According to him, Poland was soon to be decoupled from deliveries in Russia after the completion of a new pipeline with Norway, and in Bulgaria the political class is very divided in condemning Ukraine’s aggression.
“Romania needs to look at its plans to increase production and fill its warehouses. In addition, plans to connect new localities to natural gas networks need to be rethought. These connections need to be replaced with a campaign to optimize consumption and electrify sustained heating from European funds that have been unused for years,” he said.
At the same time, Nicolaescu believes that the Russians are unlikely to stop gas for other countries.
“We must also be aware that Putin, through these sanctions, is condemning the Russians to suffer even more from the lack of money they received from Europeans for gas. For this reason, their large-scale and long-term expansion, for example, by including Germany, is unlikely,” he said.
Reference prices for natural gas in Europe rose 24% on Wednesday after Russia cut off supplies to Poland and Bulgaria, Bloomberg reports.
At the Amsterdam Stock Exchange, gas futures prices rose 24% to 127.50 euros for a Megawatt-hour, the highest level since April 1.