Country’s vulnerability is social in character, not related to energy, opinions

If the energy situation turns dramatic, Prime Minister Natalia Gavrilița should go to Russia to negotiate a better price of gas with the Kremlin, said ex-Deputy Speaker of Parliament Alexandru Slusari. According to him, Chisinau should have a dialog with the Russian side and should use the Transnistrian region as a trump card in the negotiations with this. Energy expert Victor Parlicov said the probability that Gazprom will terminate the contract with Moldovagaz is low as this would mean the suspension of gas supplies to the Transnistrian region, IPN reports.

Alexandru Slusari noted that a very difficult situation is expected for household users and for business entities. Many of those who use gas in the production process will have to cease operations. The authorities should go to Russia to negotiate.

“Even if the supplies are not interrupted by Gazprom and the formula is not changed, the gas rate can rise to 30 lei and this would be unbearable not only for the population. But the situation for businesses is completely dramatic. Whole sectors of the economy will be destroyed. That’s why I consider the Premier should have talks with the Russian Federation. But the negotiations should not start from the position of a vassal. We know that Russia needs the Transnistrian region. But I admit that they can abandon the Transnistrian region at a certain moment. Russia should be told that we need additional funds for subsidizing the high rate. Therefore, we will resort to the taxing of imports for the Transnistrian region. Calculations show that the national public budget loses at least 4 billion lei from the non-taxing of imports for the left side of the Nistru,” Alexandru Slusari stated in the program “Secrets of the Power” on JurnalTV channel.

According to Victor Parlicov, Russia would have halted the supply of gas for the right side of the Nistru long ago, but it realizes that this would imply a real humanitarian catastrophe for the Transnistrian region.

“I think Gazprom wants to terminate the contract with Moldovagaz and all signs show that the Russian Federation is looking for solutions to supply gas to the Transnistrian region without being obliged to supply gas to the right side of the Nistru. The probability of such a scenario is relatively low. The Republic of Moldova is now the only guarantee that ensures the gas reaches the Transnistrian region. If the Republic of Moldova purchases natural gas bypassing the Transnistrian region, through the south, the Orlovka station, I’m sure that the Ukrainians will not allow the gas to be transported to Tiraspol. The scenario that the contract with Gazporm will be terminated is highly improbable. But it cannot be fully eliminated. I think our vulnerability is social in character, not related to the energy sector. A humanitarian crisis is possible on the left side of the Nistru. As Russia knows that the Republic of Moldova is unable to deal with a shock, a humanitarian crisis on the left side of the Nistru, it will blackmail us,” stated the expert.

Recently, the President of Moldovagaz Vadim Ceban announced that Moldova in August will pay US$1,458.5 per cubic meter of gas supplied by Gazprom, as opposed to US$980 paid in July. Today, the National Agency for Energy Regulation is to examine Moldovagaz’s request to increase the gas rate for end users.

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