Cyprus is gearing up to request an exemption from EU measures that would call on member states to reduce their energy demand as well as cap company profits from Russian oil.
According to the Cyprus News Agency, government sources on the island said Nicosia would request to be exempted from measures concerning the mandatory reduction of energy demand during peak hours, as well as the imposition of a cap on energy company profits that use lower-cost sources in their energy production.
CNA said the request would be made during Friday’s Energy Council in Brussels, where an eighth package of sanctions against Moscow was to include a ban on EU individuals serving on boards of Russian state-owned enterprises and new measures targeting individuals involved in the war in Ukraine.
Nicosia says capping excess profits from companies that produce energy from oil would 'endanger the viability of the Electricity Authority of Cyprus'
European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen on Wednesday said the Commission has estimated that the package would reduce Russian revenues by €7 billion annually.
"We do not accept the sham referenda nor any kind of annexation in Ukraine and we are determined to make the Kremlin pay for this further escalation," von der Leyen said.
But Cyprus opposes mandatory reduction of energy demand during peak hours, citing the lack of a competitive electricity market on the island as well as having no way to establish a mean with which peak hours can be determined.
Nicosia also says capping excess profits of companies that produce energy using below margin technologies, referring to energy production from oil, would “endanger the viability of the Electricity Authority of Cyprus.”
“Cyprus seeks assurances that the country will only be called upon to implement [the profit cap] regarding energy production from renewables, and not regarding energy production from oil,” the CNA report said.
The measures were being proposed after more controversial ideas were abandoned, including a price cap on gas imports, with many EU members showing anger towards the Commission after it backed away, warnign states in a leaked document that gas price caps were riksy and pushing for a demand cut instead.