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New siege of electricity and gas marketers with the endorsement of the CNMC to five ‘vetos’

Date: June 18, 2024 Time: 12:03:32

New fence of the Ministry for the Ecological Transition to light and gas marketers. The National Commission for Markets and Competition (CNMC) has issued reports in which it endorses the ‘veto’ to continue operating Solelec Ibérica, Seven Trade Solutions, Frasead Comercializadora, Wego Energy and Henar Energía after the detection of irregularities by of the portfolio directed by Teresa Ribera.

Specifically, the General Directorate for Energy Policy and Mines participated on May 23 in the initiation of the procedure by which Solelec is disqualified from selling natural gas and the subsequent transfer of its clients to a last-resort retailer. The body attached to the Ecological Transition has received several communications from Enagás, as operator of the gas system, in which the breach of payment obligations derived from capacity contracting operations is exposed. The company was required 24,323 euros to replace the guarantees for customers connected to distribution networks corresponding to the second period of 2023 and after the deadline (May 16) it has not constituted them.

The proposal for a disqualification order for the exercise of Solelec’s marketing activity is for a period of 2 years. Although the Competition gives the go-ahead to the ‘veto’, it should be emphasized that the possibility of the company accrediting the replacement of guarantees during the processing of this procedure, without incurring in additional defaults, “bearing in mind that breaches with the gas system are of a small economic entity and that the marketer is reducing its client portfolio”. “In the event that this accreditation does not take place, and taking into account Solelec’s history as an electricity marketer, the CNMCa appropriates the disqualification and transfer of its clients to last-resort marketers,” the agency qualifies. Solelec has already been disqualified as an electricity supplier.

Electricity and gas distributors on the black list

For its part, Seven Trade Solutions would not have complied with the obligation to provide the guarantees required by the operator of the electrical system, that is, Red Eléctrica. In fact, since November of last year it appears on the list of subjects in breach of the payment obligation, “generating from this date losses to the creditors of the system operator’s settlements.” Accumulated defaults are confidential. The company has made late payments and guarantees have also been executed for an amount that is not public, but even so it has not been able to cover the accumulated losses.

In this sense, “in order to minimize the damage to the system and to protect potential consumers who could begin to be supplied by this retailer”, the resolution proposal for the disqualification includes precautionary measures such as the prohibition of the transfer of customers to any other company in the same group or to companies linked to it (those that have or have had the same administrator), while the distributors may not process new customer registrations or changes of trader in favor of Seven Trade Solutions. Offers on the CNMC comparator will also be eliminated. These precautionary measures were finally ratified if the disqualification and the transfer resolution were final.

The CNMC Council report concludes that Seven Trade Solutions would have incurred up to three causes of disqualification: payment of network access tolls and charges; the purchase of energy for consumers in the market (since July 2022 none has been made) and accredit economic capacity. In this sense, it ensures that the disqualification would limit the possible additional non-payments that could derive from its lack of guarantees. The same occurs with Frasead Comercializadora, Wego Energy and Henar Energia. For the initiation of the disqualification procedure to be fully effective, it must still be published in the Official State Gazette (BOE).

The high prices of electricity in the wholesale market are to blame for the fact that many independent distributors have gone bankrupt after not being able to meet the payments. In this context, at the end of 2021, the CNMC presented measures to alleviate the financial burdens on these companies and direct consumers in their purchase and sale operations in the electricity market. It also modified the rules of the daily and intraday electricity markets, and incorporated an advance payment mechanism, prior to the issuance of weekly settlements, which allowed traders that purchased energy on the market to release their payment obligations before the due date. due date of invoices. One year later we will use new measures to alleviate financial pressure, among which the elimination of the additional intra-monthly operation guarantee stands out.

With the implementation of the ‘Iberian exception’ (on June 15, 2022), the marketers had to present greater financial support to be able to participate in the ‘pool’. The volume of guarantees, with large characteristics, must cover the payment obligations resulting from the weekly activity. Independent marketers are also having greater difficulty accessing bank guarantees.

One of the measures proposed by the Ecological Transition to try to combat the crisis suffered by these companies was to force the large electric companies to auction ‘cheap’ energy between them and the industries. However, the bid has never been held despite having the support of the CNMC itself. The idea was to force Iberdrola, Endesa, Naturgy and EDP to offer part of their electricity from inframarginal technologies in proportion to their share through forward contracts with a settlement period equal to or greater than one year. The first bid will have to be given before the end of 2021, according to Royal Decree-Law 17/2021, of September 14.

employer’s position

The Association of Independent Energy Marketers (ACIE) defends that this measure “would encourage term contracting by non-traditional marketers, while the context of increased concentration of the retail market level and the reduced liquidity of the markets is maintained.” fixed in term”. The employers’ association, of which companies such as Acciona, Engie España, Factorenegía, Feníe Energía or TotalEnergies, among others, are part, recalled that the bid is a request that “has been requesting the Ministry of Ecological Transition for months with the aim of achieving more competitive as equitable with large vertically integrated companies, and which is pending establishment from 2021”.

In August of last year, the Ribera ministry already disabled Elektron Comercializadora de Energía, Kipin Energy, Relax Energía and Simples Energía de España for a year and their clients went to a reference marketer. In Spain there are eight, which are the ones that offer the regulated rate or the so-called Voluntary Price for Small Consumers (PVPC). Of these, six operate in the Iberian Peninsula, the Canary Islands and the Balearic Islands, while there are two specifically for Ceuta and Melilla. Specifically, they are Energía XXI (Endesa), Curenergía (Iberdrola), Gas & Power (Naturgy), Baser COR (EDP), Régsiti (Repsol), CHC COR (CHC), Teramelcor (Gaselec Diversificación) and Energía Ceuta XXI (Endesa ).

* This website provides news content gathered from various internet sources. It is crucial to understand that we are not responsible for the accuracy, completeness, or reliability of the information presented Read More

Puck Henry
Puck Henry
Puck Henry is an editor for ePrimefeed covering all types of news.

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