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Michel to VDL: Present gas price cap ‘ASAP’

European Council President Charles Michel has asked European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen to put legislation on the table for an EU price cap on natural gas “as soon as possible,” according to a letter obtained by POLITICO.

Michel’s letter, dated November 7, urges the Commission to not only present a “temporary price corridor on natural gas transactions” in time for ministers to discuss at the November 24 Energy Council, but to also “share with me the expected timeline” for work on the subject to be completed.

It comes on the heels of a meeting Monday during which the Commission told member country representatives that capping the price of gas on EU markets was risky, nearly unworkable and not recommended, three EU diplomats said.

Michel’s missive hits back hard, pointing out that heads of state and government specifically asked for such a measure at last month’s European Council summit.

“In the conclusions jointly agreed by the 27 leaders we decided on a clear framework for further action. In particular, paragraph 18 identifies … which concrete decisions should now be taken as a matter of urgency — including a temporary price corridor on natural gas transactions,” the letter reads. “Energy Ministers gathered on 25 October to advance on this framework. However, in order to make further progress and deliver, legislative proposals need to be promptly tabled by the Commission to complement the 18 October package.”

“The European Council remains seized of this matter and will provide further impetus to the process as necessary,” Michel concluded.

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