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Von der Leyen announced five ‘immediate’ moves to tame EU energy prices

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen on Wednesday announced five “immediate measures” the EU could take to tackle the energy crisis — which she blamed on Russia and climate change.

“Russia is manipulating our energy markets and we are confronted with astronomic prices,” she said.

The Commission will propose a price cap on Russian gas, a mandatory target for reducing electricity use at peak hours, a cap on revenues of companies that don’t produce electricity with natural gas, a “solidarity contribution” from fossil fuel companies raking in record profits, and helping ailing utility companies with liquidity support.

“These are tough times and they’re not over soon,” von der Leyen said. “But I am convinced that Europeans have the economic strength, the political will, and unity to keep the upper hand.”

The Commission president said the EU was “also looking at” placing a price cap on gas imports from other countries.

She did not mention as part of her formal proposals an idea being pushed by Spain and some other countries to decouple the price of natural gas from the price of electricity — one of the reasons for the Continent’s skyrocketing power prices.

The Commission will formally bring forward the proposal next Tuesday, she added, after EU energy ministers have the opportunity to discuss the options at an emergency Energy Council on Friday.

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