The Government will help the families with modest incomes to cope with the high natural gas bills, said PAS MP Vasile Grădinaru. According to him, the parliamentary majority will vote in favor of the Ministry of Labor and Social Protection’s bill to offer support to citizens during the cold period of the year. The representatives of PAS said a new rise in natural gas rates should be blamed on the war in Ukraine, not on the government, IPN reports.
Last weekend, Moldovagaz requested the National Agency for Energy Regulation to adjust the natural gas rate up given that the purchase price of gas increased. This way, if the Agency accepts Moldovagaz’ request, the gas rate will be 23.5 lei without VAT. The PAS MP said the final decision will be taken by NAER, while the government’s priority is to increase the population’s incomes and to offer additional support to the socially deprived groups.
“If NAER decides to raise the rate, we hope the decision will be substantiated. Our mission is to think how to help the end users. This rise is due not to internal effects, but to the rise in the purchase price. We are hostage to this war in Ukraine. We are hostage to the war waged by Gazprom against those who support Ukraine. Our goal is to help the people. We also work on the diversification of energy resources so that we could purchase and store gas. Furthermore, we will offer targeted support to those who need the most, through bills, and we plan raises in salaries and social benefits,” PAS MP Vasile Gradinaru stated in the talk show “Emphasis on Today” on TVR Moldova channel.
Energy experts consider Moldovagaz’s request to increase the gas rates is justified as the purchase price has grown. Sergiu Tofilat said Moldovagaz’s proposal to set differential rates for the warm period and for the cold period is judicious.
“The current rate is calculated based on an import price of US$696. NAER considered that we pay US$696 on average a month. In reality, this month we pay US$980. Where should Moldovagaz take money from to pay the difference? It will accumulate debts and we then risk being disconnected or it will not make other payments and will not manage to execute the investment plan. The proposal to set differential rates for summer and for winter seems reasonable to me as in summer we consume less gas, while in winter, when consumption is higher, we should pay a different rate. For the cold period of the year, the Government should also come with targeted support measures,” said energy expert Sergiu Tofilat.
Currently, the citizens pay a rate of 18.6 lei per one cubic meter of gas with VAT included.