Bulgaria’s utilities regulator has approved a 6.2 per cent increase in the regulated gas price in the country for the month of September, setting the new price at 63.35 leva a MWh, excluding transportation costs, excise and value-added tax.
The Energy and Water Regulatory Commission (EWRC) said that its decision to raise prices for the first time after seven consecutive months of price cuts was prompted by the spike in prices on the TTF gas hub in the Netherlands, which serves as the main European price benchmark.
EWRC said that despite a 19 per cent increase in the TTF one-month futures contracts, state-owned gas company Bulgargaz had minimised the impact that price rise would have on Bulgarian consumers.
The price set for September was a fraction (just under 18 per cent) of the price that the regulator set for the same month of 2022, when consumers faced a cost of 353.21 leva a MWh, excluding transportation costs, excise and value-added tax.
At that time, Bulgaria was struggling to source enough gas to fill its Chiren gas storage ahead of winter, amid a global shortage caused by the Russian invasion of Ukraine, with Russia having halted pipeline deliveries in April 2022.
This year, Bulgargaz has already filled the Chiren facility to 93 per cent of its capacity, EWRC said.
(Photo: Marco Caliulo/sxc.hu)
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