In a document titled “Connecting power markets to deliver security of supply, market integration and the large-scale uptake of renewables,” the EC warns member states about the need to reach, by 2020, an interconnection level of at least 10 per cent for the electricity market.
The document names several states that currently fall below the EU average in what concerns the interconnectivity of electricity systems. These countries are: Italy, Ireland, Poland, United Kingdom, Romania, Portugal, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Cyprus and Malta.
The Commission estimates that an interconnected European energy network can generate cost savings of up to EUR 40 bln per year for EU consumers.
“In Europe the bulk prices for electricity are 30 per cent higher than in the US, and those for natural gas are over 100 per cent higher,” reads a communiqué published on Wednesday by the European Commission.
Likewise, the EU underscores that six EU states, including Bulgaria and the Baltic States, are dependent on a single external supplier for all of their natural gas imports, that supplier being Russia.
The EU is the biggest energy importer in the world. The 28 member states import 53 per cent of their energy needs, at an annual cost of approximately EUR 400 bln.