Minister expects Italy’s gas shortages to last until 2008

Jul 19, 2006 02:00 AM

Foreign Minister Massimo D'Alema said that he expects Italy's gas shortages to last through 2008 and pledged the government would work to resolve the "delicate problem."
Italy suffered a gas crunch at the beginning of the year after a Russian price dispute with Ukraine led to a cut in supplies to some European countries. A parliamentary commission said the shortage showed that companies hadn't retained adequate gas stocks.

The government "intends to do many things to confront the delicate energy problem with long-term policies," D'Alema said. He said he expected new gas pipelines from Russia and Algeria to open in October 2008, which should help "restore a margin of security to the system for some years."
Paolo Scaroni, the chief executive of Italy's main energy company, ENI, has complained that Italy has lacked the political will to build the necessary regasification plants to help ensure the country had sufficient energy supplies.

Source: Dow Jones Newswires
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