Oil and Gas Emergency Policy: Switzerland 2012 Update

Oil has been a dominant energy source in Switzerland, accounting for around 40% of the country’s total primary energy supply in 2010. Switzerland’s oil demand decreased in the period from 2000 to 2011. As Switzerland has no domestic oil production, it is entirely dependent upon crude oil and oil products imports. More than 60% of the total crude oil imports came from countries of the Former Soviet Union in 2011. In the country, there are two refineries with a total crude distillation capacity of around 125 kb/d. Switzerland meets its stockholding obligation to the IEA by placing a stockholding obligation on industry. Oil product importers are obliged to hold at least 4.5 months of stocks for motor gasoline, diesel and heating oils and three months for jet fuels. All oil stocks are held in the form of oil products and commingled with commercial stocks. The use of emergency oil stocks is central to Switzerland’s emergency response policy, which can be complemented by demand restraint measures. In an IEA co-ordinated action, the Administration would participate with the release of compulsory stocks. The share of natural gas in the country’s total primary energy supply stood at 12% in 2010. As Switzerland has no natural gas production, all of the gas demand is met by imports through pipelines. The key elements of Switzerland’s overall gas security policy are compulsory stocks in the form of heating oil for fuel switching, an allocation scheme for large consumers (as of 2013) and demand restraint measures.