Energy minister Miriam Dalli has underlined the importance of all EU countries being linked to the EU energy grid amid the pressures caused by the war in Ukraine.
She was speaking in Brussels at a meeting of energy ministers to discuss the war between Russia and Ukraine and the impact on the energy sector.
The ministers discussed the EU’s level of preparedness in the event of a supply crisis, solidarity between states and measures which could be taken at EU level should the need arise.
Dalli called on the European Commission to ensure security of supply to all member states. She insisted that this should be done in particular for islands not connected to the European grid. When the provision of electricity is at risk, solidarity should be shown with everyone without any distinction.
The minister explained that Malta was being adversely affected by high wholesale prices for electricity imported from Italy.
In view of the current situation it was now more important than ever that all member states were connected to the European grid for their electricity provision, including gas supplies, and eventually hydrogen.
“Malta’s geography makes the energy impacts more pronounced and challenging to address. The energy market disruptions are affecting freight costs, thereby leading to higher prices and inflationary pressures. Exacerbating the issue further is the lack of choice of transport for Malta’s businesses, where all raw materials have to be imported”, she said.
Dalli said Malta supports a coordinated approach in these particular circumstances, however, member states should be allowed a degree of flexibility to act in a manner that best addresses their particular needs.
The minister also highlighted the importance of scaling up investment in renewable energy and urged the European Commission to channel funding to offshore renewable technology, particularly in the Mediterranean, and hydrogen-ready infrastructures.