26 Jul 2022 15:41

EU ministers reach political agreement on reducing gas demand - Council of EU Czech presidency

BRUSSELS. July 26 (Interfax) - The European Union ministers managed to reach a political agreement on cutting the EU's gas consumption on Tuesday, the authorities of the Czech Republic presiding in the Council of the EU said on Tuesday.

"Ministers have reached a political agreement on gas demand reduction ahead of the upcoming winter," the presidency said in a statement on Twitter.

The European Commission proposed a plan to slash gas consumption on July 20.

"The commission is therefore proposing today a new legislative tool and a European Gas Demand Reduction Plan to reduce gas use in Europe by 15% until next spring," the European Commission said in a statement earlier.

Gazprom issued a statement on Monday saying gas supplies via Nord Stream would be cut to one-fifth of its capacity from Wednesday. Russian President Vladimir Putin has previously warned of such a possibility.

Now the Nord Stream pipeline is running at 40% of its capacity. This is linked both to the untimely return of a turbine following repairs in Canada (which imposed sanctions on Gazprom), and the lapse of time between overhauls before major maintenance, as well as the breakdown of other units.