TPP “Maritsa East 2” will not withstand the football team “Beroe”, this is a practice from 30 years ago, said the Minister of Energy Alexander Nikolov
Azeri gas could enter not only through the Siderokastro Tower, but also from the border with Turkey, an option not used
Over BGN 1.5 billion for the high prices of electricity, heating and gas are the estimates for compensations. This became clear from the words of the Minister of Energy Alexander Nikolov at a briefing on measures to overcome the crisis with energy prices. Due to the instability of the markets, the budget provides even more money – up to BGN 2 billion to support businesses, network and transmission operators and consumers of gas and heating.
Between BGN 930 million and BGN 940 million are the funds provided for compensation of the business, BGN 350 million are for support of the electricity distribution companies and ESO, BGN 200 million are directed for compensations for the high prices of natural gas. It has risen 7 times, the minister said.
The compensation period under consideration will be valid for the 4 months with the highest energy consumption.
The schemes will continue to be further developed at the highest expert level so that we can meet this crisis, which is mostly a price crisis. Nikolov pointed out the measures for overcoming the crisis with energy prices. All proposals are subject to discussion in the Council of Ministers and additional procedures, said Nikolov.
Compensations from December onwards will be calculated on the basis of the real stock exchange price of the “Forward” platform on the stock exchange day for July. It is BGN 185.59 per megawatt-hour, this is the base from which to start. All consumers on the free market with long-term contracts below this value will not receive compensation, the minister added. The amount of compensation will be 75% of the difference between the base price and the real average monthly stock price for the respective month, but not more than 30% of the real price.
A scheme has been developed to cover the losses of the network operators for BGN 350 million. This money will be enough for them and will save future deficits, which would affect the rise in prices for households and businesses.
The goal is to have predictability for electricity costs by December 31 for household consumers and businesses, the energy minister added.
The minister said a losing plant such as the Maritza East 2 TPP would not sustain a football team, despite hints that it would lead to tensions in a particular city. This has been the practice for 30 years.
Nikolov also explained the situation with the heating system. Over 70% of the costs of the district heating were for natural gas, which he assessed as inefficient and insisted on quick measures by the current principal and preparation of an investment program.
Regarding the supply and mix of natural gas, the Minister focused on long-term contracts, as Bulgaria had the opportunity for significantly lower prices than the current ones. He reminded that one of the gas projects was realized in two years (meaning “Balkan Stream” – b.a.), and the gas connection with Greece has been under construction for 12 years. The current management of Bulgargaz did not do its best to supply natural gas from Azerbaijan, which was worrying, to put it mildly. Together with Bulgartransgaz, supply possibilities were explored not only through the Kulata-Siderokastro point. There were options for Azeri gas to enter from Turkey through the Strandja compressor station. The Minister also hinted at commissions, but did not specify anything more.
The other worrying thing was that the first debtor of Bulgargaz was Toplofikacia Sofia, the second one was TPP Varna, which currently owed BGN 36 million. Interesting were the volumes of gas traded with certain counterparties aimed at significantly higher prices.
The Ministry of Energy trusted the expert potential of the energy company’s supervisors, they would be left to work undisturbed, but this would not be the case in the long run.