Only 81 companies, both gas suppliers and industrial consumers, will have something to gain as a result of the controversial emergency ordinance 114, which caps the price of gas sold by producers at RON 68/MWh, Hotnews.ro reports.
The 81 companies will receive cheap gas directly from consumers, according to a decision by the National Energy Regulation Authority (ANRE). Other industrial consumers won’t be so lucky as they’ll have to buy more expensive gas from intermediaries or importers.
The businesses that will benefit most from the new regulation are the chemical plants owned by businessman Ioan Niculae. However, most of these plants are closed down and going through insolvency, while some are nearly bankrupt, so there is a question as to how the gas will be used in these conditions. On the other hand, Azomures, another chemical fertilizer plant that has been profitable, will not benefit from the cheap gas.
ANRE’s list also includes suppliers who will get cheap gas and will be able to sell the gas to consumers at bigger prices.
The authority requires Romgaz to sell 4.2 million MWh at RON 68/MWh to industrial suppliers and consumers, while OMV Petrom must sell 4.16 million MWh at the capped price.
For suppliers of households, OMV Petrom will allocate 6.7 million MWh, and Romgaz must allocate 9.2 million MWh to sell at the capped price. The largest quantities will be provided to ENGIE, E.ON, Premier Energy, WIROM Gas, Gaz Est and Megaconstruct. Others will get under 100,000 MWh.
The price cap for natural gas will be applied for three years starting April 1. The measure has led the EU to start an infringement procedure against Romania.
According to a Deloitte study, the new measures will have several negative effects: the state budget will lose more than RON 2.2 billion, while Romanian gas producers, especially the smaller ones, will be discriminated by suppliers. Internal gas production will stagnate or significantly drop in the next few years, leading to more imports from Russia.