20 Nov 2023 09:38

Debts on Ukrainian electricity balancing market grow, endanger power grid - Ukrenergo head

MOSCOW. Nov 20 (Interfax) - The debts on the electricity balancing market, where actors owe Ukrenergo electricity transmission system operator almost 30 billion hryvni and the company's debts amount to 18 billion hryvni, create a huge problem for the power grid, which must be solved immediately, Ukrenergo CEO Vladimir Kudritsky said.

"The debt to us is swiftly growing on the balancing market. The reason is that certain resolutions have allowed certain consumers not to pay for electricity, they cannot be disconnected and their number stands at several thousands," Kudritsky said in a blitz interview with Ukrainian media.

The company initiates a review of the list of such consumers, "because we cannot go on like this," Kudritsky said.

"Even the most resilient generation companies, such as Ukrhydroenergo, are seriously affected. They simply may run out of financial resources at some point because such an accumulation of debts will overwhelm them. Not to mention the fact that we, as an operator, bear the burden of the entire debt chain," he said.

Company donors and creditors have also highlighted the problem and demanded an explanation as to how Ukraine will deal with it, Kudritsky said.

As for the general debt situation, Kudritsky said that the debts on the associated services market, which had recently exceeded 0.5 billion hryvni, were paid by the company.

"This is an example of the effect international loans we attracted precisely in order to pay off debts have given us. They allowed power plants that provide associated services (reserves) to prepare for this and last winter," he said.

It also became possible to repay debts for limiting industrial renewable energy over this and previous years in the amount of almost 5 billion hryvni, and such debts decreased to less than 0.2 billion hryvni, Kudritsky said. By the end of the year, the company plans to repay over 2 billion hryvni as debts to domestic solar power plants, he said.

According to Kudritsky, market actors' transmission and dispatch debts to the company have stopped growing and "have even been partially paid." The debts currently stand at roughly 20 billion hryvni and 8 billion hryvni, respectively, he said.

Ukrenergo estimates a growth in the balancing market debt to it by 1 billion hryvni over the past month to 29.1 billion hryvni, while the company debt has grown by 0.4 billion hryvni to 17.1 billion as of early October.

In the words of Ukrhydroenergo General Director Igor Sirota, the balancing market debt to his company had been growing by 0.5 billion hryvni over the past months and reached 7.5 billion hryvni by early October. He said no such thing happened before. Growing debts to Ukrhydroenergo endanger the company's fulfillment of its obligation to supply electricity to the population, he said.