French prime minister warns of energy price increases in coming months


French Prime Minister Élisabeth Borne warned that there will be increases in electricity and gas prices in the country in the coming months, which the government will try to moderate, and that there may be cuts in the supply of gas to the industry.

“At the beginning of 2023 there will be increases in gas and electricity prices,” French Prime Minister Élisabeth Borne said in an interview with the Quotidien program on the TMC channel on Tuesday night.

Borne guaranteed that prices “will not explode” and that the increase will be carried out “in a sustainable way”, even in the face of these certain increases and warnings, which he had already left this week in another interview with “Le Parisien”, that there should be sobriety in the energy use this winter.

The leader of the French Government warned that, in the worst case scenario, this winter there could be power cuts to the population for periods of two hours in French homes, and said that in the gas supply the industrial sector could be affected.

“We are producing less electricity, and there may be times, if it is very cold, when we may have a problem supplying electricity. In that case, we will cut [o fornecimento] through rotations, neighborhood by neighborhood, for no more than two hours”, explained Borne.

As for gas, “if there are cuts, they will not happen in people’s homes. We are not going to cut gas to the homes of the French, but to companies, which are major consumers and there, yes, there may be cuts”, he declared.

The French leader assured that gas will not be restricted in French homes, as this is the most used heating source in the country.

According to Borne, the measure is partly due to the impact of the war in Ukraine and also to the planned shutdown of about half of France’s 56 nuclear reactors for maintenance, mainly due to corrosion problems.

France, which depends more than any other country on nuclear energy, produces 67% of its electricity in this way.

These warnings come at a time when Gazprom announced that it would cut off the gas supply to French Engie, the largest gas supplier in the country, due to non-payment. For its part, Engie would have already taken precautions against this Moscow maneuver, having a dependence of only 4% on Russian gas.

In turn, Engie has guaranteed that there will be enough gas to satisfy customers’ needs and, according to the French minister for energy transition, Agnès Pannier-Runacher, the country’s strategic energy reserves are at 90%.

Gazprom earlier today stopped the flow of natural gas on the major gas pipeline from Russia to Europe, citing a routine maintenance break at the compressor station that will be resolved by Saturday.

In order to continue training French ministers on energy issues and the awaited environmental transition, the French ministers met today at a seminar that was attended by Borne and Emmanuel Macron.

At this meeting, in addition to the ‘hot’ topics of the rentré, meteorologist Valérie Masson-Delmotte, a member of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, explained to government officials the impacts of climate change and the best ways to combat them.


Source: Jornal de Negócios by www.jornaldenegocios.pt.

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