Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Romania gas consumption up 3.5 pct y/y in Jan-June

BUCHAREST Aug 23 (Reuters) - Romania's natural gas consumption rose 3.5 percent in the first half of the year to some 81.5 million megawatt hours, with imports accounting for roughly 25 percent on average, data from energy price regulator ANRE showed on Tuesday.

Romania is less reliant on Russian gas than other eastern European states. It imports around a third of its annual domestic consumption through intermediaries and produces the rest from local fields.

State-owned gas producer Romgaz, which is currently unlisted, and oil and gas firm Petrom, majority-controlled by Austria's OMV , provided the bulk of domestic gas, ANRE said.

Prices of imports ranged from $391 to $431 per thousand cubic metres of gas during January-June.
Under a 5 billion euro aid package led by the International Monetary Fund, Romania has pledged to liberalise its gas and electricity markets in stages by 2015.

It has already hiked gas tariffs for industrial consumers by roughly 10 percent in July, with another hike seen later this year. Meanwhile, ANRE froze household tariffs until 2012, saying they will get more gas produced domestically, which is three times cheaper than imported gas. 

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