The government of Hungary has declared an “energy emergency” in reaction to Europe’s soaring energy prices and supply problems.
HUNGARY’S BUDAPEST (AP) — According to a government official, Hungary’s government has declared an “energy emergency” in reaction to supply disruptions and Europe’s increasing energy prices.
According to Gergely Gulyás, chief of staff to Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, there “is unlikely to be enough gas in Europe for the autumn and winter heating season.”
To ensure a sufficient supply, Hungary will enhance its domestic energy production capabilities, Gulyás announced during a news conference in Budapest. Gulyás attributed the continent’s “energy crisis” to Russia’s involvement in the Ukrainian conflict and the sanctions that followed from the European Union.
Energy prices have increased considerably across Europe as a result of the protracted conflict and the sanctions imposed by Brussels; in fact, a sizable portion of Europe is already experiencing an energy crisis, according to Gulyás.
According to Gulyás, the nation of Central Europe will expand its yearly output of natural gas from 1.5 billion cubic meters to 2 billion cubic meters, enhance the extraction of lignite (brown coal), and restart a lignite-fired power plant that is now offline.
Exports of energy would be prohibited, and the sole nuclear power plant in Hungary will improve output by extending its operating hours, he added. In August, the measures will become effective.
The declarations followed Orbán’s earlier Wednesday demand for a meeting of his Cabinet to tackle what he termed an “energy emergency” in Europe.
Hungary has a 15-year contract for the purchase of natural gas with Russian energy corporation Gazprom since it is largely reliant on Russian fossil fuels. Around 65% of Hungary’s oil and 85% of its gas coming from Russia.
But after Moscow began its conflict with Ukraine, the EU, of which Hungary is a member, sought to impose restrictions on Russian oil exports.
However, the nationalist Orbán vehemently opposed such actions, claiming that stifling Russian oil would ruin the economy of his nation. A temporary exemption for oil imports from some landlocked nations, including Hungary, transported via the Russian Druzhba pipeline, was made possible thanks to a concession negotiated by the dictatorial leader.
At a gathering of regional foreign ministers earlier on Wednesday, Hungarian Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó stated that Hungary would seek to purchase an additional 700 million cubic meters of gas before autumn, without providing any further details.
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