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The 27 fail in their attempt to sign an agreement to reform the electricity market

Date: June 18, 2024 Time: 10:30:03

The energy ministers of the European Union have failed this Monday in Luxembourg in their attempt to reach an agreement for the reform of the electricity market to encourage long-term contracts with renewable and nuclear energy generators after Germany and Luxembourg refused to open the financing of contracts for difference to the already existing nuclear plants, considering that it excessively benefits France.

“There could have been a way to promote a majority, but I am interested in having as many countries as possible and that is in the interest of the entire European Union,” said the Minister of Energy of Sweden – the country that holds the presidency of the Council- Ebba Busch, so the responsibility for conducting the negotiations in pursuit of a future agreement will fall on the third vice president and minister for the Ecological Transition, Teresa Ribera, during the Spanish presidency.

A “priority” for the portfolio directed by Ribera

Sources from the Ministry for Ecological Transition have told Europa Press that the reform of the electricity market is a “priority” both for the Spanish presidency and for Ribera, who does not rule out calling an extraordinary Energy Council in July, taking the Che presidency as an example. ca with the cap to the gas, whose motto – that was finally emblazoned in sweatshirts for the ministers – was: “we will summon as many councils as it is necessary”.

Thus, the design of the electricity market will be approved later -still without a specific date- at ambassadorial level as a negotiating mandate with a view to informal dialogues between negotiators from the Council, the Commission and Parliament, as confirmed by diplomatic sources. Therefore, the debate will continue based on the proposal that the European Commission presented on March 14, a regulation aimed at promoting renewables and protecting consumers that requires the use of contracts for difference for new investments in renewables and nuclear that require public funding.

These investments for the generation of electricity include new facilities but also investments aimed at prolonging the useful life of existing ones, a measure that countries such as Germany or Luxembourg have rejected, considering that it is a concession to nuclear companies, which is very present in the energy mix of France.

In fact, sources present at the meeting have assured that the German Minister of Economy and Climate Protection, Robert Habeck, has left the Council given the impossibility of France giving its arm to twist in regards to contracts for difference to lengthen the life of nuclear power plants, as it does not guarantee a level playing field.

“Applying the contracts for difference to the existing nuclear park is a gift from Ursula von der Leyen to Macron, to smooth his possible re-election,” criticized the Luxembourg Energy Minister, Claude Turmes, who estimates the additional income for electricity at 120,000 million EDF, which implies an “enormous distortion in the internal market of the EU”.

In response to the opposition of Germany and Luxembourg, the European Commissioner for Energy, Kadri Simson, has indicated that a possible solution may be to establish a “clearer” link between the amount of the sources of income the contracts for difference on existing assets and the magnitude of the new investments, thus creating a “general principle of proportionality”.

The most vocal against the Brussels proposal has been the Hungarian foreign minister, Péter Szijjártó, who has claimed the right of member states to make their own decisions to announce their vote against the electricity market reform because it annuls the possibility of governments to intervene in pricing.

* 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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