EU to give Moldova another 250 mln euros to deal with energy crisis - von der Leyen
CHISINAU. Nov 10 (Interfax) - The European Union will provide Moldova with 250 million euros to deal with the energy crisis, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said at a joint press conference with Moldovan President Maia Sandu in Chisinau on Thursday.
"The Republic of Moldova is facing an acute energy crisis, related to both supply of gas and electricity and the affordability of gas and electricity. Rest assured, we are doing everything we can to help you [Moldova] face this crisis. Therefore, we have put together an additional energy support package for the Republic of Moldova. First, we are pledging 200 million euros to help Moldova meet its gas supply needs. This will consist of 100 million euros in grants and 100 million euros in loans," von der Leyen said.
The money will be available starting from January 2023, she said.
"Secondly, we will provide an additional 50 million euros for budgetary support to Moldova. This will help provide support to those most vulnerable," von der Leyen said.
The EU gave Moldova 840 million euros in grants and loans over the past year, she said, reiterating further support.
"Russia, Gazprom, has cut 80% of the gas supply in the last eight months but we have been able to compensate, we have diversified away from Russia to a reliable suppliers [...]. We have saved energy and we have filled our gas storages for the winter. So we are well prepared for the winter and we have drastically reduced our dependency from Russian fossil fuels," she said.
Von der Leyen pledged to support Moldova in overcoming the energy crisis and supplying gas to Moldova from alternative sources. "We are doing everything possible to provide a reverse flow of gas to the Republic of Moldova from other suppliers. As electricity is concerned, you are a part of our market and we share as much electricity as possible with you
For her part, Sandu said that "Gazprom cut gas supply by 50% with no plausible explanation or justification, and we do believe that it is a political decision, not a commercial decision because Moldova has been paying for its gas consumption despite the fact that the prices have been growing and they are very high."
Gazprom cut gas supply to Moldova 30% to 5.7 million cubic meters per day on October 1 vs. the 8.06 million cubic meters necessary due to technical problems caused by the limits on gas transit via Ukraine. The company said it would be supplying the same amount of gas, which is half of the necessary amount, in November.