Security of supply tops the agenda at Energy Community Gas Forum

7 October 2022

This week’s Energy Community Gas Forum focused on the state of play of the Energy Community Contracting Parties’ preparedness for this winter and the security of supply situation in the region. In view of the tight gas supply situation, the Forum discussed concrete mitigation measures in case of a prolonged halt of Russian supplies and underlined the need to step up cooperation and coordination between Energy Community Contracting Parties and EU Member States, as underlined in the recently published SEEGAS study. This includes the swift application of the EU’s Network Codes at border points and the prompt signing of interconnection agreements between Energy Community Contracting Parties and EU Member States.
Opening the Forum, Director Lorkowski said: “Given the scale of the challenges ahead, we need to change our way of thinking, upgrade our energy sector cooperation, accelerate our energy transition. To deliver on security of supply, we must cooperate and coordinate among ourselves and with EU Member States. This crisis requires from all of us – the EU and the Contracting Parties, a common response.”
The security of supply situation in Moldova and Ukraine was in particular focus given the current war situation. The Forum welcomed Moldova’s gas reform progress and underlined that enhanced cooperation with neighbouring countries is crucial for the country’s winter preparedness. Ukrainian representatives informed the Forum that despite the high uncertainty, the supply situation remained stable at present thanks to domestic production and reduced demand.
The Forum welcomed the incorporation of the Gas Storage Regulation in the Energy Community acquis and called for its swift implementation to safeguard security of gas supply. The Regulation requires those Contracting Parties that have storages to fill them to at least 80% of capacity by 1 November this year. The Forum invited the Contracting Parties to make the best use of the EU joint gas purchase mechanism, open to the Energy Community, once it is established.
Gas affordability and policy options to support vulnerable energy consumers were also discussed. The Forum welcomed the recommendations of the recently published Policy Guidelines on Identifying and Addressing Energy Poverty in the Contracting Parties. The Guidelines set out short and long-term measures to address energy poverty effectively in line with energy transition goals.