April 20, 2021

The CNMC launches a reduction in the bill for gas and electricity – La Provincia

TheNational Commission of Markets and Competition(CNMC) has proposed a cut of 7% of the compensation received by companies for the distribution of electricity and close to 18% of gas in order to define a regulatory framework "stable and rigorous" and appropriate to the business cycle.

Thus, the initial remuneration for the distribution of electricity will be fixed in5,455 million euros per year, what isa cut of 7% with respect to the current figures; the transportation of electricity at 1,656 million euros per year, 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 euros, 21.8% less.

In this way, the regulator assumes the powers conferred by the community law on natural gas and electricity, after the approval by the Government of the Royal Decree Law last January so that it can issue regulatory circulars, just as they do and to the CNMV and the Bank of Spain.

These are seven additional circular projects that Competition will submit to public consultation, with a period of allegations that will extend until August 9, in order to enter into force before January 1, 2020.

This new criterionwill allow a reduction in tolls paid by consumersthrough the bill of the light, for what will suppose a cheapening of the same, at the same time that will guarantee a profitability "reasonable" for the regulated companies.

Based on a theoretical criterion

From now on, these payments to electricity and gas will be conditioned by a technical criterion based on the WACC, a mathematical formula that calculates the weighted average cost of capital, responding to the criteria that the CNMC has maintained over the past six years. of what"excessive" returns were being granted,especially in the gas sector, where there has been less investment.

According to the CNMC, this methodology minimizes regulatory uncertainty, since, being easily replicable, it facilitates the predictability of future rates of remuneration and contributes to generating a "more stable and favorable" environment for investment.

On the other hand, the CNMC has also proposed an increase in the remuneration received by the technical manager of the gas system, in this case Enagas, of 7.9% and the operator of the electricity system, which is Red Eléctrica de España (REE), of 21.6%, although with much smaller amounts, of 24 million euros for the first and 58 million euros for the second.

Regulatory framework until 2026

The CNMC stresses that it is necessary "to provide transparency and security" to the electricity and gas system operators and to consumers "who bear the cost of their activity". Regarding the transport of electrical energy, he stresses that the project aims to meet the objectives in terms of energy efficiency and the integration of renewables, so as to prioritize the improvement and updating of the existing network.

Once the period of allegations has been completed, Competencia will analyze them and approve the final regulatory circulars, whichwill take effect during the next regulatory period, which runs from 2020 to 2025 in electricity and from 2021 to 2026 in the case of gas.

Two of the main companies affected by this possible regulatory change,Enagas and Naturgy, have reacted to the stock market downturn, once the proposal of the CNMC is known. The first recorded a fall of about 4% and the second of 2%, after 13.30. According to a Sabadell report, the remuneration to gas networks represents 80% of the value of Enagas and 23% of Naturgy.

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