The country’s lenders have called for the abolishment of an electricity supplier surcharge and an intention to offset the resulting RES special account revenue loss through an increase in the RES-supporting ETMEAR surcharge by March, energypress sources have informed.
This latest demand comes as yet another energy-sector challenge for the government just days before the bailout’s third review is due to be completed. The government has apparently not embraced this new demand.
The ETMEAR surcharge is imposed on electricity bills paid by consumers and enterprises.
The lenders have included this demand in a list of terms to be used as a basis for final third review negotiations, beginning in Athens today and expected to conclude Friday. Energy minister Giorgos Stathakis is scheduled to meet with the lender representatives tomorrow and Thursday.
The government opposes this latest demand, believing the supplier surcharge is a fair measure that has proven effective as, besides leading to a RES special account surplus, it will also result in a slight ETMEAR surcharge reduction for consumers, meaning marginally reduced electricity bills.
The lenders are also applying pressure for the establishment of an energy exchange by next May. This demand is linked to the proposal for the supplier surcharge’s abolishment. As was reported by energypress last week, LAGIE, the Electricity Market Operator, has proposed scrapping the supplier surcharge and ensuring RES special account revenues through the mandatory purchase, by suppliers, of “green certificates” at the energy exchange.
The supplier surcharge was adopted in August, 2016, following overwhelming parliamentary approval, and was then fine-tuned through two related consultation processes held by RAE, the Regulatory Authority for Energy. Limits were imposed following RAE intervention earlier this year.