State-Owned Energy Companies to Offer More Electricity on Exchange to Stabilize Electricity Market
112 ECONOMY - ELECTRICITY - PRICES - MINISTER
State-Owned Energy Companies
to Offer More Electricity on Exchange
to Stabilize Electricity Market
Sofia, January 14 (BTA) - Bulgaria's state-owned energy companies have committed to offer an extra amount of electricity on the Day Ahead Market of the energy exchange in an attempt to stabilize trading, Energy Minister Minister Temenouzhka Petkova told a news briefing here on Monday after government officials and business executives met to map out measures to settle the situation in the local electricity market.
The meeting was hosted by the Energy and Water Regulatory Commission (EWRC) and involved the Energy Ministry leadership, managers of the three state-owned companies which supply the bulk of electricity on the free market (the Maritsa East 2 TPP, the Kozloduy N-Plant and the National Electricity Company (NEK)), managers of the Bulgarian Energy Holding, the Electricity System Operator, the Independent Bulgarian Energy Exchange (IBEX) and the electricity distribution companies.
Last week trade unions, employers and government representatives called for urgent measures to ease tensions on the electricity market and in industry. The unions and employers identified three problems: first, the persistent state monopoly, considering that the Maritsa East 2 TPP, NEK and the Kozloduy N-plant are the main sellers and can influence prices; secondly, the purchase at whatever price of about 30 per cent of the electricity on the Day Ahead Market by the three electricity distribution companies to offset their technological losses, which inflates the average prices; and, third, the 38 leva/MWh public obligation surcharge, which pushes up domestic prices but is not paid when electricity is exported.
Petkova said the state-owned energy companies now supply 690 MWh, which will increase to over 700 MWh as of January 19, at about 44 leva/MWh. Last week the press compared the January 8 day-ahead price of 207 leva/MWh to the year-earlier level of about 67 leva/MWh.
EWRC Chairman Ivan Ivanov said that accelerated steps will be taken this year towards market coupling with the energy exchanges of Southeastern Europe. To this end, the Energy Act will have to be amended to abolish the export charge.
IBEX CEO Konstantin Konstantinov said negotiations on Day Ahead Market coupling were most advanced with Macedonia's energy exchange. As to the Intraday Market, coupling with the Romanian energy exchange is likely to take place first. RY/DD