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Allegations that the EU will propose gas rationing

July 21st, 2022

A pro-government commentator is outraged by suggestions that the European Commission may propose  centrally rationing gas consumption. A liberal analyst takes it for granted that the Hungarian government will try to veto any such attempt.

Magyar Nemzet’s László Néző finds both outrageous and frightening reports that the European Commission plans to introduce EU-wide energy rationing. (According to Politico, the EU is planning to use emergency powers to force EU countries to reduce their gas consumption.) The pro-government columnist likens the EU leadership to the Politburo of the Soviet Communist Party, deciding on all issues and forcing its will on the entire Socialist Block. He goes on to claim that centralizing decisions on gas consumption would be another milestone in the EU’s ‘battle against nation states, normality and the European way of life’. Néző also considers EPP President Manfred Weber’s suggestion that the EU should redistribute natural gas among EU member states to help those who suffer from shortages as an outright communist proposal – which Marx, Engels and Lenin would be proud of. Néző concludes by suggesting that the EU’s ‘neo-Bolshevik’ leadership poses a graver threat to Europe than Russian President Putin.

On 444.hu, Péter Magyari points out that EU-wide gas rationing makes sense only if the EU has the right to redistribute natural gas within EU member states, otherwise consumption cuts would do nothing to help those countries that do not have enough resources. The liberal analyst recalls that the EU has already enacted a voluntary gas distribution scheme once, in 2014 after the Russian annexation of Crimea, but Hungary chose not to take part.  As the Hungarian government is confident that the country has enough storage capacity, and it can purchase enough gas through Serbia, Magyari contends that the Hungarian government will do whatever it can to prevent the European Commission triggering mandatory gas consumption cuts.

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