Oil accounts for 34% of the EU's energy mix. The EU does produce some of its own oil, but most supplies are imported. As the majority of the EU's transport fuels come from oil and some EU countries are heavily reliant on the resource for heating and electricity, it is vital to maintain emergency stocks to be used in the event of supply disruptions.
Emergency oil stocks
Under the EU's Oil Stocks Directive:
- EU countries must maintain emergency stocks of crude oil and/or petroleum products equal to at least 90 days of net imports or 61 days of consumption, whichever is higher
- Stocks must be readily available so that in the event of a crisis they can be allocated quickly to where they are most needed
- EU countries must send the European Commission a statistical summary of their stocks at the end of each month. This summary must state the number of days of net imports or consumption that the stocks represent
- During a supply crisis, the Commission is responsible for organising a consultation between EU countries. Withdrawals from stocks should not be made before this consultation, except in a very urgent situation.