Rõivas: Gas Supply Situation Not Good ({{commentsTotal}})

Prime Minister Taavi Rõivas says that the current situation with the gas supply is worrying and his priority at the European Council meeting is the new climate and energy policy framework.

The council meeting, which starts in Brussels today, focuses on the climate and energy policy, economic situation in the EU and security issues.

Rõivas said ahead of the meeting that potential problems with gas supply are of great concern to Estonia. "In terms of the gas connections, we must be up front in admitting that the current situation is pretty bad for Estonia, because the two companies from Estonia and Finland, who were in talks [over the building of the LNG terminals on both sides of the gulf], have reached a dead end, and there is no agreement on the horizon."

"I reached an understanding with the Finnish prime minister last week that as the energy companies are unable to come to a compromise, we are both willing to raise this issue on the prime ministerial level. Estonia is interested in building the Balticconnector pipeline between Estonia and Finland as quickly as possible. If Finland and Estonia, and Latvia and Lithuania by extension, form a single market, this market will be considerably less vulnerable to external pressures," he added.

The next in the agenda is to decide if and where the LNG-terminals will be built.

However, Estonia's main interest in today's meeting is the new climate and energy policy's influence on the local oil shale industry.

"Estonia has expressed a clear interest in developing a climate change agreement that would allow Estonia to develop its oil shale industry in a way that the oil shale could also be used to produce oil shale oil. This is, on the one hand, economically rewarding and, on the other hand, environmentally friendly, because the amount of waste products would be cut by half," said the prime minister.

He added that he has already introduced Estonia's plans to the prime ministers of Finland, Sweden and Poland. "I intend to raise the issue of oil shale industry's competitiveness also at the European Council meeting," he said.