Prices at Bulgaria's New Energy Exchange 'Unexpectedly Low'

Energy | January 21, 2016, Thursday // 14:16|  views

Electricity prices at the newly set up Independent Bulgarian Energy Exchange (IBEX) are at surprisingly low levels, just two days after IBEX started "real" trade, an electricity traders' union has warned.

The prices demanded for electricity at IBEX have been below BGN 50 (EUR 25) per MWh since the one-month trial period ended earlier this week.

However, electricity should not be sold at less than BGN 70-80, the head of ATEB (Association of Traders with Electricity in Bulgaria), has told the Bulgarian National Radio.

This price reflects the minimum value of a MWh sold at tenders held by state-owned power plants, Martin Georgiev, who heads ATEB, has added.

In his words, low prices currently observed might be a result of either a push to draw participants or the commitment taken on by the Bulgarian Energy Holding (BEH) before the EU Commission to provide the needed liquidity at IBEX.

Higher prices are needed for an exchange to be a "referent to market prices" in a country or market zone - and therefore its rates should be close to what is currently being paid under existing bilateral contracts.

Bulgaria's government says it is committed to a full liberalization of the electricity market by the end of the year.

Energy officials have repeatedly noted that, although power prices for end consumers are likely to go up at the beginning, the energy exchange will eventually result in households and businesses paying less for electricity.

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Tags: IBEX, Independent Bulgarian Energy Exchange, ATEB


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