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PM Marković at PMQs: Electricity price is defined by independent regulator, Government protects most sensitive categories

PM Marković at PMQs: Electricity price is defined by independent regulator, Government protects most sensitive categories
Published date 24.04.2019 16:49 | Author PR Service

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Prime Minister Duško Marković said that the price of electricity is within the competence of an independent regulator, and that the Government's commitment is to protect the most sensitive categories of our population through its policy.

"Therefore, today, through two groups of programmes, the Government subsidizes electricity bills for around 17,000 households. For the first time, we recognised the categories of buyers which can never be off an electrical grid, regardless of possible debt," the Prime Minister said, answering the question of MP Raško Konjević from the Social Democratic Party. Konjević asked if the Government will give up the electricity price increase announced for 1 May.

The Prime Minister said that the issue of defining the price of electricity sold by EPCG is within the competence of an independent regulator, who works on the basis of clear and detailed methodologies.

"What is within the competence of the Government is determining the fee for renewable energy sources, which, depending on the entry into the system of investments in this area, is defined by the Government according to the methodology. As we promised at the beginning of this year, we looked at all the possibilities in the previous period to fairly distribute the burden of renewable sources to all consumers. In this sense, we made a decision to abolish the renewable resources fee as of 1 June 2019, and instead of consumers this cost will be paid by the Government from funds collected from polluters, and through excise on coal. This item makes up about 5 percent of consumer bills that consume up to EUR 30 a month or about 1.5 percent of consumer bills that consume up to EUR 100. Thus, by abolishing this fee, which will be financed by the polluters (carbon dioxide emitters) in the future, the bills will be lower between 1.5 and 5 percent, which is one of the largest recorded reduction of the bills," the Prime Minister said.

Government has restored ownership of EPCG to almost 80 percent

PM Marković said that he believes that this Government has shown how to properly manage the national enterprise in which the Government has ownership.

"The Government has restored ownership of EPCG to almost 80 percent, while by the end of the year 100 percent of ownership is expected. This activity cost 230 million and in no way burdened the budget or the citizens. The state-owned EPCG has launched an investment cycle after 10 years. The next month we expect the tender for the ecological reconstruction of the first block of the thermal power plant, in June we expect the signing of a contract for the construction of the Gvozd wind farm and the reconstruction of the Perućica and Piva hydroelectric power plants, and by the end of the year the start of the construction of the solar power plant Briska Gora. Parallel to these projects, we are working on the preparation of construction of the Komarnica hydroelectric power plant, " PM Marković noted.


EPCG as investor

Prime Minister Duško Marković said that EPCG is preparing and entering the process of ecological reconstruction of the thermal power plant Pljevlja with EUR 40 million, reconstruction of hydro power plants Piva and Perucica with EUR 40 million, construction of solar power plant Briska Gora with EUR 200 million, construction of Komarnica hydro power plant with EUR 260 - 290 million, Kruševo hydropower plant – EUR 160 million and Gvozd wind farm – EUR 70 million.

"We have started a special project to upgrade 10kW networks and low-voltage networks to ensure the safety of electricity supply, and in 3 years this investment will amount to EUR 80 million. In this and first half of the next year, it will amount to EUR 30 million," the Prime Minister emphasised.

The Prime Minister concluded that EPCG was not an investor for a long time, but now it is.

"Therefore, do not worry about the present or future profits of the State, which we will definitely use as owners specifically for the further development of systems and services, and support to sensitive categories. The Government will continue to insist on the implementation of strategic priorities - the development and reliable supply of electricity to all consumers at optimum prices," PM Marković noted.

PUBLIC RELATIONS SERVICE OF THE GOVERNMENT OF MONTENEGRO