The markets await the ECB’s decision on interest rates today expecting a potential record rate hike and also watching later in the day a speech by a member of the US Federal Reserve that might also hint at its plans. Other central banks also look set to react and respond. In the UK, the new PM is set to give a speech this morning in which it is widely expected that energy price caps will be introduced in a plan to ease the energy burden on consumers. The plan is also expected to see a new licensing round in the North Sea with as many as 130 licenses on offer. It is also possible that the ban on fracing will also be reversed as the UK seeks to find ways to be more energy self-sufficient. Germany also plans to subsidize power at a basic energy usage level for households according to Reuters.
Other countries in Europe are also taking steps to try to avert a winter disaster. Here in Czechia, the Government has managed to fill gas storage to 85% already. The article quoted Industry Minister Jozef Sikela.
“Putin pretends Europe will not be able to survive the coming winter without Russian gas, that isn’t true,” Sikela said in a Twitter post, adding that supplies from Norway, Belgium and the Netherlands were helping fill storage.
The Czech Republic has also secured 3 billion cubic metres of annual gas capacity – about a third of annual consumption – through an LNG terminal in the Netherlands that is due to open on Monday.
Finland fired up two oil-fired generators temporarily as well in order to balance the country’s electricity system and prevent blackouts while repairs were made at a reactor. Meanwhile, German minister Robert Habeck hinted at energy market redesign among other measures to fight back against higher prices.