Bulgaria utilities regulator keeps household electricity prices flat

Bulgaria’s Energy and Water Regulatory Commission (EWRC) decided to leave household electricity prices unchanged on November 1, despite a sizeable fall in the price of natural gas during the month of October.

Gas is the main feedstock for heating and power cogeneration facilities, but the 14 per cent price cut in October caused a less than 0.1 per cent drop in electricity generation costs. EWRC said that it decided to leave household prices unchanged as a possible safeguard against future gas price increases, although the cost savings could also factor in future price cuts down the line.

Earlier this year, in August, the regulator approved an electricity price cut averaging 0.1 per cent.

Industrial consumers, meanwhile, will see a 2.8 per cent reduction in the “social responsibility” fee, which was introduced in 2013 to replace renewable energy and power grid loss surcharges, down to 36.8 leva for a MWh.

This small drop, however, is unlikely to placate large employer associations, which have been protesting since summer against the regulator’s decision to sharply increase the tax, which nearly doubled in August. Employer groups have already carried out symbolic walk-outs in protest against the high fee, threatening further industrial action unless the regulator brings down the size of the fee.



The Sofia Globe staff

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