Illegalities in gas procurement? Maia Sandu: These accusations are false

The Republic of Moldova does not have own natural gas and the gas charge depends on the purchase price existing on the international market. Furthermore, during the cold period of the year, when the prices were high, volumes of gas were bought and these haven’t been used. Now this gas needs to be consumed, President Maia Sandu said when asked why the gas charges do not decrease more when the purchase prices on the international market are low. The officials expressed her confidence that all the natural gas purchases were made in accordance with the law despite the speculations about eventual fraud, IPN reports.

President Sandu said the Moldovan authorities cannot influence the gas charge as Moldova does not have own natural gas and is dependent on the purchase price existing on the international market.

“We purchase natural gas from outside the country. When the price on the market grew, we had to buy gas at a higher price, but provided compensation and I contributed then as I went to our partners and asked them to give us money and during the first winter we offered 3 billion lei compensation, while during the second winter - 5 billion lei compensation. These are considerable amounts. As we do not produce natural gas, we cannot influence this price. The regulator should adjust the prices and make sure that abuses are not committed. The Government and I, through the foreign policy, ask our partners to help us when we are in a difficult situation,” Maia Sandu stated in the program “Reflection Points” on Vocea Basarabiei channel.

President Sandu also said that Moldova has yet natural gas stores that were bought at high prices and these need to be covered through the charge.

“Winter was mild and particular amounts of gas remained. These are not exaggeratedly large, but they were anyway purchased at a high price. Respectively, the price now declines. Energocom purchases gas at another price and the price of the remaining gas and of the gas bought now is determined. Other Governments purchased gas at the price of US$2,000 and now need to cover this gas and we also have particular volumes that remained since winter,” noted the official.

Maia Sandu denied any accusation about eventual illegalities committed in the procurement of gas. She said the figures show that the paid price is correct.

“These accusations are false. I want those who make such assertions to provide at least one proof. If you see the correct figures, these show that the Government in winter managed to purchase natural gas at prices that were slightly lower than on the market. Those who are accused should sue those who spread lies as these never use concrete figures. When figures are provided, everyone can see that there was no fraud there,” stated Maia Sandu.

On June 7, the National Agency for Energy Regulation set a charge of 16.73 lei per cubic meter of gas. Together with VAT of 8%, the gas charge for household users will be 18.06 lei. The Agency’s decision takes effect when it is published in the Official Gazette.

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