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Commission outlines options to mitigate high energy prices with common gas purchases and minimum gas storage obligations

23.03.2022

Commission outlines options to mitigate high energy prices with common gas purchases and minimum gas storage obligations

Following up rapidly on the REPowerEU Communication and the Versailles Declaration, the Commission has set out ideas today for collective European action to address the root causes of the problem in the gas market and ensure security of supply at reasonable prices for next winter and beyond. 

The Commission is tabling a legislative proposal today, introducing a minimum 80% gas storage level obligation for next winter to ensure security of energy supply, rising to 90% for the following years. To address concerns about continued high energy prices, the Commission has also adopted a Communication setting out the options for market intervention at European and national level, and assessing the pros and cons of each option.

EU partnerships with third countries to collectively purchase gas and hydrogen can improve resilience and bring down prices. The Commission stands ready to create a Task Force on common gas purchases at EU level. By pooling demand, the Task Force would facilitate and strengthen the EU's international outreach to suppliers to help secure well-priced imports ahead of next winter. The Task Force would be supported by Member States representatives in a Steering Board. A joint negotiation team led by the Commission would hold talks with gas suppliers, and would also prepare the ground for future energy partnerships with key suppliers, looking beyond LNG and gas. It would be inspired by the experience from the COVID-19 pandemic, where EU wide action was crucial to guarantee sufficient supplies of vaccines for all. 

For more information:

View the Proposal for a regulation on gas storage

View the Communication on security of supply and affordable energy prices

View the Annex to a proposal for a regulation on gas storage

View the Annex to the Communication on security of supply and affordable energy prices