Romania’s Government has passed the bill concerning the support measures directed towards large energy consumers who will be exempted from paying up to 85 percent of the green certificates (GCs) included in electricity invoices. Following consistent pressure from Arcelor Mittal or Alro Slatina, the Ministry of Economy issued nearly two months ago a bill draft meant to help large industrial companies that are burdened by the green certificates they are charged for to support the renewable energy production.
According to the Ministry of Economy, the subsidies involve a budget of 750 million euro, without establishing the financial source to cover the amount.
So, depending on power consumption, major industrial companies will benefit from a reduction of the quota of green certificates they are compelled to acquire, reduction which ranges from 40 percent to 85 percent– for the largest energy consumers.
“Depending on the energy intensiveness of companies listed in paragraph (2), beneficiaries will be charged the following percentages of green certificates as per the mandatory quota: 15 percent, in case of electric intensity higher than 20 percent, 40 percent, in case of electric intensity of 10-20 percent and 60 percent, in case of electric intensity of 5-10 percent”, was specified by the bill draft posted on the Ministry of Economy website.
The subvention scheme will come into force on August 1, 2014, upon receiving the approval from the EU Commission. It will be effective for ten years, with 50-100 companies estimated to benefit from it. That, if the eligibility criteria is met, meaning that the companies which will request this state-aid must implement energy efficiency measures, maintain their number of employees during the period they are granted these subsidies and they must conclude partnerships with educational institutions in view of attracting qualified staff and increasing the professional level.
For 2013, the mandatory quota of green certificates to be purchased by electricity suppliers was nearly doubled compared to the previous year (0.224 GCs/MWh vs 0.1188 GCs/MWh in 2012) impacting the large energy consumers, as the subsidies granted to renewable energy producers are supported by the final consumers, the green certificates being included in the electricity invoices.