Lower ETMEAR surcharge plan for industry tabled in Brussels

A Greek plan for adjustments in line with European Commission directives concerning state aid in the environment and energy domain, promising significantly reduced energy costs for energy-intensive industries, will be presented in Brussels today and tomorrow, energypress sources have informed. This EU provision has been utilized by many member states.

The EU directives, published in April, 2014, primarily aim for the adoption of measures intended to boost the level of competitiveness of Europe’s energy-intensive industral sector. They enable EU member states to offer state aid to industry, which, in Greece, would effectively reduce the RES-supporting ETMEAR surcharge paid by industrial consumers, as long as certain conditions are met.

The Greek plan proposes lower ETMEAR surcharge payments by energy-intensive industries consuming over 13,000 MWh per year. This lower surcharge would be set at a minimum of 15 percent of the average ETMEAR price that applies overall for all consumers.

Extremely energy-intensive industries whose electricity costs exceed 20 percent of their gross value added (GVA) would pay an ETMEAR surcharge of no more than 0.5 percent of their GVA. This would apply for major-scale industries in the metal, steel and cement sub-sectors, amongst others, and offer tremendous energy cost savings.

Energy-intensive enterprises whose electricity costs are less than 20 percent of GVA would pay at ETMEAR surcharge of no more than 4 percent of GVA. Few industrial enterprises are believed to qualify for this category.

The Greek plan includes a proposal for a minimum ETMEAR surcharge of 0.3 euro per MWh for certain sectors such as steel and aluminium industries.

In addition, the plan includes favorable revisions for certain consumer categories such as farmers, hospitals, ministries and state-owned buildings, whose ETMEAR surcharge would work out to 50 percent of the average level. Mass transportation would pay 30 percent of the average ETMEAR level, while the main power utility PPC’s lignite mine facilities would be charged 20 percent of the ETMEAR average.

Greece’s energy minister Giorgos Stathakis will aim to have the adjustments implemented in July.