Brussels, 6 December 2012
Commission welcomes decision to grant Moldova more time for energy legislation
The European Commission welcomed yesterday's decision to give Moldova almost four extra years to unbundle its gas pipeline network. The Ministerial Council of the Energy Community has extended Moldova’s deadline for the implementation of ownership unbundling rules in the gas sector until 1st January 2020. This decision reflects the particular situation of Moldova’s energy sector, which is 100% dependent on a single gas supplier.
Günther Oettinger, the EU Commissioner for Energy, said: "Yesterday's decision responds to a request by the Moldovan government to take into account Moldova's very specific situation. Securing the uninterrupted supply with gas for the Moldovan citizens and businesses is the priority and Moldova can count on the solidarity of the European Union and Energy Community partners on this. The Republic of Moldova is moreover fully committed to transpose the remaining internal energy market rules by 2015, as agreed last year in Chisinau under Moldovan Presidency of the Ministerial Council. I encourage the EU and Moldovan energy experts to together look for solutions so that Moldovan citizens can soon enjoy the same benefits of internal energy market as do the citizens of the EU."
By Decision of the Ministerial Council adopted on October 2011, all members of the Energy Community committed themselves to implement the EU gas and electricity rules of the "Third Package" by 1st January 2015 and to unbundle their gas transmission systems and gas transmission operators by 1stJune 2016. Following yesterday's decision, this deadline has been extended until 1st January 2020 for the Republic of Moldova. All other EU internal energy market rules have to be implemented by Moldova by 2015.
With this decision, the specific situation of Moldova's energy market has been taken into account: Moldova has no domestic production of gas and is 100% dependent on gas imports from a single supplier – which is also the majority owner of the country's gas transmission system. Gas accounts for 90% of domestic power generation. In addition, key parts of the gas import and transport infrastructure are located in Transnistria, a territory over which there is an unsolved sovereignty conflict. All these circumstances make it difficult for Moldova to implement the unbundling provisions in time.
In the coming weeks the Commission will set up an EU-Moldova Joint Expert Group. It will support Moldova in implementing the Third Energy Market Package and assist Moldova in restructuring its gas sector and in increasing security of supply.
Moldova joined the European Energy Community in 2010. The Community extends the EU internal energy market to South East Europe on the ground of a legally binding framework. The Community has committed itself to implement the relevant EU legislation and to liberalise their energy markets. This includes the area of electricity, gas, environment and renewable energy.
The Energy Community is an international organisation between the European Union and the following nine Contracting Parties: Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, the Republic of Moldova, Montenegro, Serbia, Ukraine and Kosovo*. To date, Armenia, Georgia, Norway and Turkey have the status of observers.