Romanian regulatory agency member criticises amendments to renewable energy law

By bne IntelliNews June 26, 2013

Romania's renewable energy support mechanism was good as defined under the 220/2008 law and needed no amendments, Zoltan Nagy-Bege, a managing board member of energy market regulator ANRE argued in a conference held on June 25. 

Nagy-Bege argued that the amendments drafted by the government under the emergency 57/2013 ordinance will result in higher electricity prices and will double the price of the green certificates on the market to EUR 53 (which is the  maximum value and slightly above the current cost), as he implies that without the amendments the certificate prices would have dropped to EUR 27. 

The investors will no longer pour money in projects and the renewable energy target will not be met thus keeping the supply of certificates low, he explained.

Furthermore, he claimed that the ordinance includes a series of technical mistakes – hopefully to be corrected before the enforcement in parliament since it is designed to produce effect as of July 1. The ordinance was discussed in parliament’s lower house [that has the final vote though] by the expert committee on June 25 after the upper house already endorsed it.

The ANRE official also argued that the government’s ordinance as it is, after its enactment as a law by the parliament, will need the endorsement of the EC before stepping into force. The government’s position though is that only particular stipulations – namely on waivers given to large power consumers, need the EC endorsement.

Furthermore, Nagy-Bege said he is in favour of a concomitant enforcement of both the government ordinance and ANRE’s recommendations issued in April under the annual check for overcompensation, though he admits this might create some ambiguous situations. The government rather prefers to ignore ANRE’s recommendations, while the 57/2013 ordinance substitutes the market regulator’s recommendations.

As we reported, ANRE has recommended trimming down the number of tradable green certificates given per MWh of power delivered by investors in renewable energy production capacities. Separately, the government aims to withhold under the 57/2013 ordinance, until 2017/2018, part of the certificates – in order to avoid immediate negative impact on the end-user prices.

Even if the text of the ordinance suggests that ANRE should run a new six-month check for overcompensation starting with the data from H1 this year, Nagy-Bege argues that this should not be the case – and the six-month overcompensation check under the new mechanism should be enforced at a later moment in order to avoid overlapping. 

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