A state of emergency has been declared in Hungary due to supply problems and soaring energy prices in Europe.
Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s chief of staff, Gergely Gulyás stated there is “unlikely to be enough gas in Europe for the autumn and winter heating season.”
Hungary is set to boost its domestic energy production capacities to ensure sufficient supply, Gulyás said during a news conference. He said the war in Ukraine and subsequent EU sanctions are the reasons for the continent’s “energy crisis.”
“The prolonged war and the sanctions from Brussels have caused energy prices to rise dramatically across Europe, and in fact a major part of Europe is already in an energy crisis,” Gulyás added.
Hungary will increase its annual production of natural gas from 1.5 billion cubic metres to 2 billion cubic metres, boost coal extraction and restore an offline power plant in Matra, Euro News reports.
Gulyás added that Hungary’s current gas supply was uninterrupted, and should restrictions be required in the future, households would only be impacted as a last resort.
"Wastefulness can no longer be afforded anywhere," he said. "Every alternative should be looked at that provides incentives for the most sparing use of energy in the economy."
In addition, the government has authorised the Hungarian Hydrocarbon Stockpiling Association and state energy group MVM to purchase additional gas on the market to stockpile, Reuters reports.
"We estimate that it is possible to buy 700 million cubic metres of gas before the start of the heating season," said Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto.
Orban’s government is reportedly considering financing the cost of additional gas purchases via a syndicated bank loan, estimated at up to €1 billion, portfolio.hu reports.
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