Government officials remain cautiously optimistic on the prospects of EU recovery fund support for the country’s RES special account, impacted by the pandemic and resulting lockdown measures.
The European Commission is seriously considering Greece’s request for EU recovery-fund support for the RES special account, well-informed sources have noted.
Athens is seeking 200 million euros in financial support, as a lump sum, for the RES special account from the European Commission’s Recovery and Resilience Facility (RRF).
A decrease in energy consumption prompted by the lockdown restrictions has pushed the RES special account, remunerating renewable energy producers, to deficit territory as a result of lower consumption-based surcharge contributions across the market.
A pandemic-induced fall in Greek wholesale electricity prices during the first wave of the crisis, early in 2020 – they averaged 28.51 euros per MWh last April – has also affected the RES special account’s cash inflow.
European Commission approval of Greece’s support request for the RES special account would represent a first step in the procedure as the two sides would then need to agree on the extent of the deficit that can be attributed to the pandemic.
Introduced by Brussels last month, the RRF is worth a total of 672.5 billion euros in loans and grants.
A study by Swedish-Finnish consulting giant Afry, commissioned by RAE, Greece’s Regulatory Authority for Energy, estimates Greece’s RES special account can only remain in surplus territory over the next three years with a 200 million-euro injection of support funds.
According to the Afry study, the RES special account would record deficits of 92 and 51 million euros in 2022 and 2023, respectively, without recovery fund support, under the best of conditions, including continuation of the same number of emission rights granted to Greece on an annual basis.