Ministry of Energy predicts gas shortage by 2025
Kazakhstan may experience gas shortage already by 2025. This was reported by Kazakh Energy Minister Bolat Akchulakov during a government meeting in the Mazhilis on the problems and prospects of the energy industry development. According to him, gas usage in the country increases on average by 7 percent annually. That is evidenced by the statistics from 2017 to 2021. During this period, the gas usage grew by 35 percent – from 13 to 18.5 billion cubic meters. The head of the ministry noted that despite the fact that our country ranks third on gas reserves among CIS countries behind only Russia and Turkmenistan, the policy of price containment hinders the development of this industry. The current gas prices in the country, according to Akchulakov, are among the lowest in the world. This may lead to the country’s dependence on imported resources in the future.
“At the same time, the Ministry submitted a proposal to the Government on freezing purchase prices from subsoil users by 2024. The given measure will also help to contain the wholesale marginal price on the commercial gas for socially vulnerable segments of the population. To maintain the financial sustainability of the national operator it is necessary to introduce the long-term pricing and tariff policy, taking into account the gradual increase of wholesale prices. In this regard, the Ministry with KAZAKHGAS Company is working out the issue of legally introducing new categories of consumers, such as large commercial consumers and digital mining operators,” the minister said.
Such measure, according to the minister, will enable to maintain the level of prices, including for socially vulnerable segments, without accumulating excess losses to the National Operator.
Translation by Zhanna Smagulova
Editing by Galiya Khassenkhanova