Croatia plans to ban gas exports, which could increase tensions with Hungary
Croatia plans to ban the export of locally produced natural gas
Minister of Economy Davor Filipovych made this statement after a meeting with MOL representatives in Zagreb.
Because of this, tensions with neighboring Hungary may increase.
After all, Croatia and the Hungarian oil and gas company MOL jointly own one of the largest Croatian utilities, the INA oil, and gas concern.
"The message I also sent to MOL representatives is that INA plans to produce 703 cubic million of natural gas in 2022.
And all this gas produced in Croatia should go to Croatian citizens, institutions, hospitals, and kindergartens at an acceptable price," the minister said.
"Next week, the government will make a decision according to which Croatian gas will go to Croatian companies and citizens," Filipovych stressed.
He was asked if this meant that Zagreb would effectively ban the export of natural gas.
To which the minister answered that the government would officially order INA to sell all gas produced in Croatia to Croatian citizens, institutions, and companies.
Filipović also made it clear that the INA leadership no longer enjoys the support of the Zagreb government. That is why the general director of INA, Sandor Fasimon, submitted his resignation.
MOL is INA's largest shareholder with a 49.08% stake, while the Croatian government owns just under 45%. Over the past decade, the two largest shareholders have been embroiled in several legal battles.
In the latest INA scandal, Croatia arrested five people, including a senior INA manager.
They are suspected of organizing a scheme to resell INA natural gas to third parties.
As reported, from September 1, Gazprom will deliver 5.8 million cubic meters of natural gas daily to Hungary via Serbia, more than stipulated in the long-term contract.
Before that, russia agreed to give Hungary an additional 700 million cubic meters of gas after the visit of Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Sijarto to Moscow.
In addition, the Hungarian Atomic Energy Authority issued a permit for the Paks II project – the expansion of the Paks nuclear power plant, which will be carried out by the russian state corporation Rosatom.