The former head of the Austrian Foreign Ministry criticized the European policy of the last 20 years and said that due to the leadership of ideas about renewable energy, the market turned out to be “very skewed”
The crisis in the electric power industry in Europe began in 2021 and is a consequence of the liberal reforms of the last 15-18 years. This was stated in an interview with TASS by former Austrian Foreign Minister Karin Kneissl.
“We had a crisis in the electric power industry even before the gas crisis began. This is the result of liberalization over the past 15-18 years, we have been experiencing it since April 2021, that is, for more than a year. <…> In general, this is a situation that we ourselves provoked, — she said.
Kneissl noted that the electricity market in Europe now operates “according to some incomprehensible principles”; and is not a classic supply and demand market. “He was steered towards renewable energy about 18 years ago. It turned out that the market turned out to be very skewed, & mdash; the ex-minister continued.— I do not want to go into technical details, but the fact is that the electricity market, despite the role of renewable energy sources, is still highly dependent on the price of gas. Even when electricity is generated more from renewable sources.
She recalled that after April 2021, electricity prices increased by 30-40%, and now the growth reaches 400%, as a result of which households are in decline. “For industries, for the industry, the situation is even worse. Now there is already a movement in the UK— it's not the EU, but it might spread further,— when people simply boycott their electricity bills. So we had an electricity crisis even before the gas crisis,— added the ex-head of the Austrian Foreign Ministry.
Kneisl headed the Austrian Foreign Ministry in 2017-2019 under Chancellor Sebastian Kurz. In 2018, she married Wolfgang Meilinger, Russian President Vladimir Putin attended the wedding. He stayed at the event for about an hour. In particular, during this time he danced with the bride. In June 2021, Kneisl joined the board of directors of Rosneft. as an independent director, but left that post less than a year later. In August of this year, she spoke about moving to Lebanon because of the threats she received.
The energy crisis in the EU has intensified against the backdrop of Western sanctions against Russia due to a special operation in Ukraine— restrictions affected the energy sector. This was followed by a decline, and later a complete cessation of Nord Stream traffic, rising prices for gas, oil and electricity, and record inflation. The situation in the European economy is complicated by severe drought in the central and southern parts of the region.
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In response to Western restrictive measures, Moscow transferred gas payments for unfriendly countries (the list of such states includes the entire EU) in rubles. After the refusal of some countries, including Finland, the Netherlands, Poland, Denmark and Bulgaria, to pay in Russian currency, Gazprom stopped deliveries. The head of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, claimed at the end of July that in total gas pumping was stopped in 12 EU countries.
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