November 29, 2020

Competency forces the lowering of light and gas with trimming to tolls


The National Commission of Markets and Competition (CNMC) has proposed a cut in the compensation received by companies for electricity and gas distribution. Thus, the profits received by energy companies for the distribution of electricity will be fixed at 5,455 million euros per year, with a cut of 7% compared to the current figures; the transport of electricity in 1,656 million euros, 8.2% less; the distribution of gas at 1,420 million euros per year, 17.8% less; and the transport of gas and regasification in 1.186 million, 21.8% less.

The economic burden that consumers will assume every time they get the electricity bill will be lightened thanks to this set of measures. The new criterion aims to define a regulatory framework "stable and rigorous" that will allow a reduction in tolls paid by consumers through the electricity bill, lowering it, while guaranteeing a "reasonable" return for regulated companies.

In this way, the regulator assumes the powers conferred by community law on natural gas and electricity, after the approval by the Government of the royal decree law last January, thanks to which they can issue regulatory circulars. These seven projects of additional circulars will be submitted to public consultation by Competition, with a period of allegations that will run until August 9, in order to enter into force on January 1, 2020 and will be applicable during the next regulatory period (2020-2015 for electricity and 2021-2026 for gas).

From now on, these payments to electricity and gas will be conditioned by a mathematical formula that calculates said earnings based on the weighted average cost of capital (WACC, for its acronym in English). This technical criterion minimizes regulatory uncertainty by responding to the criterion applied during the last six years that was granting "excessive" returns, explains the CNMC.

In the case of electricity, as the investment continues to grow significantly, the decrease is lower than in gas, where it says that "no significant levels of investment are expected". On the contrary, the remuneration for the technical manager of the gas system, Enagás, and for the operator of the electricity system, Red Eléctrica de España (REE), rose by 7.9% and 21.6%, respectively.

The reactions have not been slow to arrive. Several industrial associations applaud the proposal considering that it is "reasonable" to review the remuneration of the gas networks, in order to harmonize them with the real situation and compare them with the rest of Europe. The industries estimate to pay 45% more in tolls compared to their European counterparts, which hampers their competitiveness, so this measure will mean a "cost relief", according to these associations in a statement. But not everything was going to be flattery. The energy company Naturgy will argue this set of measures.

. (tagsToTranslate) larazon.es



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