EXCLUSIVE Unprecedented: Government admits in an official document that the ordinance for…

EXCLUSIVE Unprecedented: Government admits in an official document that the ordinance for capping energy bills could violate European law / The justification note states in black and white: It is likely to contradict Directive 944/2019 and Regulation 943/2019

The explanatory note to the emergency ordinance for capping energy bills, adopted Thursday evening by the Ciucă government, says the new legislation could violate European law. The background note is public, on the Ministry of Energy website, and repeats the warnings given by The National Authority for Energy Regulations (ANRE) and about which G4Media wrote exclusively.

What the Explanatory note says:

  • „(…) In this regard, it was deemed necessary to introduce corrective measures for the functioning of the two markets, measures decided at political and governmental level, but which are likely to contradict some provisions of the Electricity and Natural Gas Act 123/2012, Directive 944/2019 and Regulation 943/2019. The envisaged measures are intended to contribute to the increase of revenues to the state budget, to the safe operation of the National Energy System and the National Natural Gas System, and to ensure the constant and permanent supply of consumers during the winter period 2022-2023”.

Energy Minister Virgil Popescu on Friday dismissed as „speculation” the accusations that the emergency ordinance could violate European law.

„The ANRE also participated in all the discussions I attended. Everything that ANRE proposed is in the text of the GEO, and the GEO was approved by ANRE, the rest is speculation. I don’t think the ordinance violates any European directive. In fact, on 9 September, in Brussels, I will present what we approved yesterday in this GEO. And you should know that the model of taxation of producers is not invented by us,” Minister Virgil Popescu said on Friday when asked by reporters about the ANRE warning.

On the other hand, Rareș Bogdan, first vice-president of the PNL, launched a harsh attack on the ANRE on Friday, after the institution said that the price cap ordinance could drive some energy suppliers out of the market: „Undermining the Romanian state, Mr Chiriță (Dumitru Chiriță, ANRE president, editor’s note) is playing with fire. I demand the revocation of the whole Council, my patience has run out”, Rareș Bogdan said. The ANRE is an independent institution, under parliamentary control, and it has the obligation to arbitrate the energy market.

It should be recalled that the National Energy Regulatory Authority (ANRE), the arbiter of the energy market in Romania, has also warned the government in a note that the emergency ordinance adopted on Thursday to cap bills is in flagrant violation of European rules because it limits EU energy trade, according to the document consulted by G4Media. ANRE was referring precisely to the two European legislative acts: directive 944/2019 and regulation 943/2019.

Moreover, ANRE warned the government that the emergency ordinance risks bringing Romania a sanction procedure (infringement) because of the price limitation to producers.

ANRE’s harshest warning, however, comes in terms of the impact of the ordinance on energy suppliers. The authority says that the ordinance could lead to the exit of certain suppliers from the market because of the mechanisms imposed and calls on the government to set up trading and supply companies to compensate for the possible exit of some of these market participants.

ANRE made these observations and recommendations in an opinion on the emergency ordinance approved by the government on Thursday. The ordinance, which the government claims is designed to protect the population from rising prices, introduces a number of mechanisms that seek to de facto cap energy prices and ban electricity exports.

  • Read more: https://www.g4media.ro/exclusive-government-warned-by-the-national-authority-for-energy-regulationsanre-that-the-new-energy-bill-capping-ordinance-will-lead-to-the-disappearance-of-some-energy-suppliers-state-owned-compan.html

Traducere: Ovidiu Harfas

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