Bulgarian Watchdog to Tackle Energy Prices by Upping ExportEnergy | June 11, 2013, Tuesday // 14:26| views
New DKEVR head Angela Toneva (L), together with predecessor Evgenia Haritonova (C), file photo, BGNES
Bulgaria's State Commission for Energy and Water Regulation (DKEVR) will strive to stimulate export in order to preserve current prices of electric energy.
The statement was made Tuesday by DKEVR member Elenko Bozhkov.
Bozhkov further informed the energy watchdog will attempt to increase export in order to solve the issue with low consumption and surplus production of electricity.
"The situation is not that great. We export about 100-150 MWh and the transit of electricity is about 250 MHh – 1.5 B KWh so far this year. The regulator wants to enable export of 5 B KWh," said Bozhkov.
He explained export will be stimulated by eliminating part of the hurdles stemming from the transit tax, which includes the "green" and the "brown" supplement to purchase electricity from renewable energy sources and cogeneration plants (combined production of heat and electric power) of Thermal Power Plants, TPP, and of some industrial enterprises.
The new DKEVR head, Angela Toneva, explained the watchdog was using a new mechanism of forming prices that would be officially introduced by the end of the week.
"We hope it won't harm anyone; we count on understanding from power utilities, but we pledge that prices of heating will not go up due to electricity prices," said she.
A new price formation methodology was prepared by the team of caretaker Economy and Energy Minister, Asen Vasilev. It foresees a 4-fold decrease of the expensive "brown" energy (cogeneration power) in the electricity mix by lowering its mandatory purchasing quota.
One of the ways to achieve this is to purchase from TPP's only the electric power that is produced by highly-effective installations, which in the case of Sofia's heating utility would mean minus BNG 100 M in annual revenue.
Toneva's predecessor, Evgenia Haritonova, who resigned recently, said the above would mean increasing the price of heating, as the heating utilities counted mostly on "brown" energy revenues to maintain their prices at a stable level.
High electricity and heating bills were among the grievancies that sparked the January-February 2013 protests in Bulgaria that toppled the cabinet of former PM Boyko Borisov and led to snap elections in May.