“Taking the streets to inform” about Fair Gas Prices


by Dumitru Chisalita, Energy Expert

The Fair Gas Prices (PretCorectLaGaze) campaign, started 100 days ago, “takes the streets to inform”. Information of gas consumers in order to achieve a functional gas market in Romania and getting fair prices will move to a new step, of dialogue. For that, we are on our way with the “FAIR GAS PRICE” CARAVAN, which will stop on May 29th 2015 at the Central University Library “Eugen Todoran” in Timisoara. The information campaign aims at achieving a functional gas market in Romania and getting fair prices for purchased gas and will have answers to at least the following questions:

  • Who can get a fair gas price?
  • How can one get a fair gas price?
  • When can one get a fair gas price?
  • Why should one have a fair gas price?

The Fair Gas Prices campaign is not headed against anyone, nor is it aimed at supporting anyone, the critical attitude being for the constructive and corrective purpose to set a free gas market, beneficial for all players. People, as citizens, journalists, managers, politicians etc., are much too busy with the numerous daily concerns that have become obsessing and do not allocate time to inform themselves. Therefore, the purpose is:

  • To develop knowledge among end household and non-household customers so that they can understand the benefits of a liberalized market
  • To present the reality of market liberalization
  • To eliminate the manipulation of the gas market

Large scale information, with the proper, detailed and professional explication of energy issues, by highlighting opportunities and threats that lurk behind the energy sector, requires an information program. Presenting a proper analysis of the liberalization process, especially in the view of consumers, with the proper and full treatment of consequences and limiting intangible hopes to create a fair market. Objectives such as eliminating absolute poverty, halting the process of poverty and its reduction to an acceptable social and economic level, increase in welfare, access to education and health, employment, real income growth – they all have a strong link with energy. The Fair Gas Price Caravan aims to travel in 8 locations in Romania, during 2015, and carry out in each of these locations 4 activities:

  1. Colloquia on gas market liberalization to determine debates with the participation of companies and institutions, consumer associations, academics, students, citizens etc. Discussing market concepts, its functioning, answers to the most frequent questions about market liberalization, rights and obligations of gas suppliers and consumers, presenting ways of concluding supply contracts by bilateral negotiation or in centralized system, the advantages and disadvantages of market liberalization etc.
  2. Roundtables with local government representatives, parliamentarians for their awareness of the effects of gas market liberalization, of dangers that are involved in certain approaches of gas market liberalization, of advantages and disadvantages of gas market liberalization.
  3. Discussions with representatives of the media regarding the importance of monitoring the market to ensure the functioning of the market and eliminate slippage in the market and the phenomenon of “wise guys”.
  4. Questioning participants in order to measure perceptions about the effects of gas market liberalization.

In the free market, the price is formed following a negotiation between suppliers and customers. Depending on their capacity to negotiate, a selling price is obtained. This price has direct (visible) components and indirect (invisible) components. While we suppose that suppliers are aware of these issues, customers are less likely to know them. In this context, informing the customers is essential to determine negotiations in the market and to allow getting lower prices. But the objective of any consumer, of price decrease, does not happen by itself. Prices fall as a result of interaction between seller and customer. Natural decline in consumption during the summer months (demand is lower than the supply), the trend of reduction of import gas prices as a result of its correlation with oil prices, the absence of storage tariff in the price etc. allow the customer to negotiate a price which, in the view of the summer of 2015, can be lower than the current price paid by consumers. The price may only drop if consumers start negotiations with suppliers and know how to negotiate. We plan to reveal these methods. The program of the Caravan includes sessions in Timisoara, Suceava, Constanta, Craiova, Cluj Napoca, Ploiesti, Iasi, Brasov.

You can find details on:

The website of the event: www.pretcorectlagaze.ro, www.dumitruchisalita.ro.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/PretCorectLaGaz?ref=hl

Registration at e-mail: pretcorectlagaze@yahoo.ro

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net