Moldova raises electricity tariffs
CHISINAU. Nov 3 (Interfax) - The Moldovan National Agency for Energy Regulation (ANRE) decided on Wednesday to increase electricity tariffs for household consumers by over 50%.
Thus, the price for electricity provided by Premier Energy, which supplies central and southern Moldova, will rise from 3.15 to 4.77 lei/kWh, while FEE Nord, which supplies electricity to the north of the country, will increase it from 3.21 to 4.81 lei.
The suppliers themselves expected an increase in tariffs to 4.89 and 6.03 lei, respectively.
The decision to raise the tariffs is explained by the increase in the price of electricity purchased from external sources amid the energy crisis in Moldova. Electricity tariffs were last increased on October 14. Taking into account the two hikes, electricity tariffs soared by 81% over the past month.
The new tariffs will take effect after being published on the Official Monitor on Friday, November 4.
At a government meeting on Wednesday, Moldovan Prime Minister Natalia Gavrilita said that in the energy sector, "the most gloomy scenario has set in" for Moldova. "Since summer we have been preparing for different developments, but unfortunately, we see that things are going on according to the most pessimistic scenario. Since Tuesday, we no longer have a contract with the Moldavskaya GRES [in Transdniestria]. We are receiving 50% of the required gas volumes. And although the government is taking measures in terms of energy supplies, every day we have a 20-30% shortage, and every extra megawatt used is a real cost for us," she said.
She said that by covering the shortage through emergency contracts, only by the end of the month will the final price be known, and only then will it be clear whether such purchases could continue or whether it would be necessary to resort to outages.
Gazprom confirmed that it will supply 171 million cubic meters of gas to Moldova in November, whereas the country (the Transdniestria region inclusive) needs 334 mcm of gas. Faced with gas supply shortages emerging in November, the Moldovan state-run company Energocom based on the right bank of the Dniester and Transdniestria-based Moldavskaya GRES failed to agree terms on which the station would supply gas to the right-bank part of Moldova. Earlier in October, Moldavskaya GRES supplied power energy at the best price of 62.5 euro per 1 megawatt-hour. After the gas supply from the left bank of the Dniester River was halted, the Moldovan operator Energocom is buying electricity from the Romanian market at the price of 90 to 250 euros per 1 megawatt-hour and higher.