Romanian Transgaz will manage the gas transmission system in Moldova

The entire gas transmission network in the Republic of Moldova will now be under the management of Vestmoldtransgaz, a company jointly owned by the Romanian gas transmission system operator Transgaz and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD).

The lease agreement spans a period of five years. Under this arrangement, the responsibilities for the operation, dispatching, and transmission of natural gas in the Republic of Moldova will be assumed by the operator Moldovatransgaz, starting from September 19, 2023.

Previously, Moldova’s natural gas transmission system was divided between two entities. Vestmoldtransgaz, in which Transgaz holds a 75% stake and EBRD 25%, was responsible for managing the Iași-Ungheni-Chişinău pipeline in Moldova. Meanwhile, Moldovatransgaz, a part of the integrated company Moldovagaz, was the primary operator. Moldovagaz is controlled by the Russian conglomerate Gazprom, with 50% ownership, while the Moldovan government holds 35.33%, and the authorities of Transnistria, the pro-Russian separatist region of Moldova, own 13.44%.

This decision was made in response to Moldovagaz, which is under Gazprom’s control, failing to meet the requirements for the spin-off. This failure prompted changes in Moldova’s legislative framework to ensure the country’s energy security and align with European regulatory standards.

Moldovagaz had been responsible for transmission, distribution, and delivery, which contradicted the European principle of unbundling. According to this principle, a company cannot simultaneously function as both a supplier and a transporter or distributor of natural gas.

With this initiative, Transgaz continues to maintain its strategic presence in the Republic of Moldova, thereby contributing to safeguarding the strategic interests of the region. Ensuring the separation and independence of natural gas transmission system operators from vertically integrated companies involved in gas production, distribution, storage, trade, or supply is a key objective in the creation of a liberalized natural gas market in the Republic of Moldova

Ion Sterian, General Director of Transgaz

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