Bulgarian regulator passes electricity price cut

Bulgaria’s State Energy and Water Regulatory Commission (SEWRC) ruled on December 30 to reduce electricity prices starting January 1 2014, the third such price cut in 2013.

A one per cent reduction will apply to household daytime tariffs; the night-time rate will be cut by 10 per cent. Electricity prices for industrial consumers will be reduced by 1.5 per cent.

To fund the price cuts, the regulator will reduce the margin of “technological losses” afforded to the three private electricity distribution companies (owned by Czech CEZ and Energo-Pro, as well as Austria’s EVN – all of them have opposed the latest price cut) from 12 per cent to 10 per cent.

Under Bulgarian law, the electricity price formula allows distribution companies to bill customers for the electricity “lost” through their power grid on the way to end-users, with the regulator setting the maximum level of acceptable losses. The electricity distribution firms are in turn required to use all such revenue for investment in grid maintenance and upgrades.

Earlier this year, SEWRC cut electricity prices in March (averaging between 6.2 per cent and 7.3 per cent for the three electricity distribution companies) and August (averaging between 4.2 per cent and 4.9 per cent for daytime tariffs).



The Sofia Globe staff

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