After months of wrangling, EU energy ministers finally approved the first ever cap on gas prices, which is scheduled to come into force in February. The aim of the measure is to curb the crisis that has been rocking Europe over the past year as a result of gas and energy prices surging to unprecedented levels. Since there’s a lot of confusion about what the cap really is, I’ve written a brief explainer. In short, this isn’t a cap on price-gouging by Russia (or anyone else); it’s a cap on the system of speculative trading (the TTF in Amsterdam) that the EU has deliberately foisted upon its energy markets. In other words, it’s yet another case of the organisation attempting to fix a problem of its own creation.

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