At this point, the Government doesn’t plan any gas price compensations for companies; rather, the price increase will be reflected in consumer price hikes and therefore it’s the population who needs compensations the most, says Economy Minister Sergiu Gaibu.
During a talk show on RLive TV, Gaibu said that the Government is instead preparing support programs for entrepreneurs that will help them modernize their equipment and achieve increased energy efficiency.
“Companies that burn gas in their production processes include it in the price, so the burden still falls on consumers. That’s why our assistance programs are focused on the population. The main course of intervention is support for the people, vulnerable groups in particular. The best solution as regards companies is to support retrofitting programs, renewable energy systems, so as to increase their energy independence and reduce their bills. The main tool that can be used is retrofitting, because it is impossible to offset prices endlessly. No economy can support this. It is impossible to develop a society on such a mechanism”, said Gaibu.
He added that, in the event that Gazprom will cut natural gas supplies to Moldova completely, the risk that the country will face a shortage of goods is “minimal”. Gaibu says that the big producers have alternative sources, and in exceptional situations the missing Moldovan goods can be replaced by imports.
“Two in three companies consume electricity (rather than gas). Household consumers have a higher gas consumption, they depend more on natural gas than companies. Gas consumption is concentrated at a number of fairly large producers, who have alternatives. It can be fuel oil, which they are already stocking up on, or coal, but to a smaller extent. They have alternative power sources. As concerns consumer goods, we rely a lot on imports, and if we run short of something produced domestically, it can be covered from imports. But we will strive to maintain maximum functioning of the critical nodes in our economy”, added Gaibu.
A new gas rate for household consumers entered into effect on Friday, increasing from 18.62 to 22.99 lei (+23%).