Czechia needs until 2024 to shake off Russian fossil fuel dependence

Czechia, which is currently exempt from the EU’s embargo on Russian oil imports, will solve its current dependence on Russian fossil fuels imports in 2024, said Trade and Industry Minister Jozef Síkela the day before the embargo came into force.

Czechia, still highly dependent on Russian oil, is exempt from the EU’s embargo on Russian oil imports that was approved in May and set to come into force on Monday (5 December) to ensure EU countries have the time to adapt and find alternative sources of oil.

“If we can complete the contracts with Algeria, Norway and Qatar, complete the interconnections that we need, such as the TAL (pipeline), such as some more new terminals, so we have some mix in terms of energy security, I think the problem of fossil fuel supply from Russia will be definitely solved in 2024,” Síkela said for the Czech Television.

Meanwhile, he also mentioned that Czechia has enough gas for this winter and that it is necessary to deal with the following one. The country has about three billion cubic meters of gas contracted at Dutch terminals for next winter, covering up to 40% of consumption.

In addition, it will continuously fill domestic storage tanks with LNG over the next year, with a capacity of around 3.5 billion cubic metres. It plans to secure the rest of the required quantity through future contracts with Algeria, Norway and Qatar.

“The biggest threat for next winter is the lack of gas elsewhere in Europe and the danger of gas not reaching us for some reason. But because we have set up a solidarity system, we have also secured the transportation routes, so we are trying to limit that risk,” Síkela said.

According to the minister, the Ministry of Industry has almost completed the updated energy concept idea, which he would like to present to the government in the first quarter of next year. The concept should be based on nuclear as a stable energy source, promoting renewable energy and energy savings.

(Aneta Zachová | EURACTIV.cz)

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