Government Commission endorses methodology principles for trade in electricity with third countries


2021 03 02


Today, the Electric Power System Synchronisation Commission headed by Prime Minister Ingrida Šimonytė has approved the proposed principles for the new methodology for trade in electricity with third countries.


Lithuania will offer the Baltic states to follow the principles in negotiations on a trilateral methodology with a view to preventing trade in unsafe electricity from Belarus.


‘Laws and mutual agreements must be observed. While allowing Belarusian electricity to enter the Baltic market, we are financing development of the nuclear power plant in Belarus. The new methodology for trade in electricity with third countries, as proposed by Lithuania, would ensure application of the anti-Astravets law,’ said Prime Minister Šimonytė after the Commission’s meeting.


The Commission, which met for the first time, has discussed possible negotiation scenarios and specific legal and technical measures to prevent trade in electricity from Belarus. The Commission has also agreed that next week the Government should give a mandate to the Ministry of Energy to negotiate with Latvia and Estonia a new trilateral methodology for trade in electricity with third countries.


According to Minister of Energy Dainius Kreivys, the principles of the new methodology will ensure that licence will be issued only for the volume of electricity trade with mainland Russia that would physically enter through Latvia-Russia and Estonia-Russia interconnections.


The Ministry of Energy has already requested the European Commission to hold a joint EC-Baltic meeting in the BEMIP format. ‘The Baltic states have always been strong when they stood united. We will make every effort to ensure that this is so this time as well, but in case of failure to reach the trilateral agreement, Lithuania is ready to apply technical and legal measures to ensure implementation of the anti-Astravets law,’ says the Minister of Energy. According to Kreivys, this would require a separate decision of the Commission.


Under the current anti-Astravets law, Lithuania may not consume electricity produced in Belarus. Meanwhile, electricity that physically enters Lithuania from Belarus via Belarus-Lithuania connection, is traded in the Latvian trade zone. This way, Lithuania consumes and pays for the electricity produced in Belarus.