NOME launch on final stretch, 2016 amount set at 460 MW

Preparations for the country’s inaugural NOME auction, scheduled for October 25, have entered the final stretch following yesterday’s board decision at RAE, the Regulatory Authority for Energy, to set the amount to be offered to participants in 2016 at 460 MW. Auction participants need to register by October 14.

The 460 MW amount will be offered as one sum and not two separate amounts of 200 MW and 260 MW as was proposed by LAGIE, the Electricity Market Operator, because a second auction within 2016 is not feasible.

The NOME auctions are intended to provide third parties with access to main power utility PPC’s low-cost lignite and hydropower sources as a measure to help break the utility’s market dominance and reduce its market share to less than 50 percent by 2019.

In the lead-up to yesterday’s decision at RAE, energy-intensive industrial enterprises had expressed a preference for a smaller amount at the October 25 auction, covering physical delivery from December, 2016 to November, 2017.

According to EVIKEN, the Association of Industrial Energy Consumers, one auction offering 460 MW would favor suppliers already well placed in the market, putting newcomers in a disadvantageous position. Breaking up the 460 MW into smaller amounts would serve them better, the association noted.