Minister: without electricity from third countries prices would rise

If Latvia did not take electricity from third countries, electricity prices could rise by 15%, Economics Minister Janis Vitenbergs (KPV LV) told Latvian Television on June 21.

The Baltic States are still unable to agree on the attitude towards the Astravyets nuclear plant built in Belarus. It is located only around 50 kilometres from the Lithuanian capital Vilnius. Lithuania considers it dangerous, calls for it to be boycotted and not to buy electricity produced there. Latvia has not joined the boycott because it recognizes that it would cause too much damage to the economy.

"If we cut electricity trade with third countries in the world so quickly... According to our estimates, this could increase electricity prices in Latvia by up to 15%. And that would be an additional burden. Because electricity prices are one of the biggest and most important costs that our producers have, and that's what we certainly don't want to pile on them," the Minister said.

The response of Belarusians if Latvia joined the Lithuanian boycott should also be taken into account. Belarus would break, for example, transit through our ports.

The Minister of Economics admits that the Ministry does not have any estimates of losses yet.

"The European Commission is involved in the negotiations, seeking to find compromises acceptable to all parties,” said Edijs Šaicāns from the Economics Ministry.

In Belarus, in the meantime, the final preparations are carried out for the nuclear station in Astravyets to start working, possibly at the end of this summer.

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