Saturday, September 10, 2022

Even when faced with a preventable apocalypse bureaucrats punt...

EU finance ministers battle to reach consensus on energy plan

European energy ministers have disagreed on a price cap on Russian gas, and want the EU Commission to rework proposals to shield Europeans from increasing energy prices.

European energy ministers tasked the EU Commission to work through the weekend to rework plans to bring spiraling energy prices under control.

The commission has "a clear mandate to work out a viable proposal, or even better, viable proposals," German Economy and Energy Minister Robert Habeck said after a summit of energy ministers in Brussels on Friday.

They failed to reach consensus on measures proposed by European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen earlier in the week.

The Commission could present the reworked proposals for the member states as early as Tuesday.

The EU will table "unprecedented measures next week for an unprecedented situation," said Energy Commissioner Kadri Simson.

EU Commission plan to cap Russian gas price contentious

The biggest sticking point appeared to be whether and how to impose a price cap on the amount the bloc pays for Russian gas.

"Russia has used its gas supplies as a weapon to foster an energy crisis next winter but also to weaken our economies and divide, politically the European Union," Simson said. "We have to ensure that their efforts will fail."

Member states in central and eastern Europe who still get gas from Russia feared retaliation by Moscow.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has threatened to cut off supplies altogether if Europe imposed a cap.

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