CEZ to settle EUR 40mn debt to Albanian power utility KESH.

By bne IntelliNews April 17, 2012
Czech power utility CEZ, which owns Albanias sole energy distribution company, CEZ Distribution, has agreed to settle its EUR 40mn debt to Albanian state-owned power utility KESH, news service Balkanweb reported, citing a statement of Albanian economy minister Nasip Naco. The company has earlier requested the World Bank help in arbitrating the disputes with the Albanian government over regulatory obligations. CEZ Distribution has argued that the Albanian energy regulator has raised by 91% the prices of electricity generated by the state-owned power producer (which is a monopoly supplier for the distribution firm), but the price hike has not been reflected in consumer prices, thus pushing the distribution operator into difficult financial situation. As a result, the company has generated loss every day since the beginning of 2012. CEZ Group purchased 76% of CEZ Distribution, formerly known as OSSH, for EUR 102mn in March 2009. The countrys 110-kilovolt distribution network serves around 1.1 million customers in Albania.

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