On 22 March 2022, the Emergency Government Ordinance no. 27/2022 on the applicable measures for final consumers on the electricity and natural gas market for the period of 1 April – 31 March 2023 was published in the Official Gazette and entered into force.
On the background of rising global energy prices, the national legislative framework put forward in October 2021 is amended as follows:
• Introduction of new electricity and natural gas price caps for household and non-household consumers. No price caps for big electricity household consumers nor for big natural gas non-household consumers.
• Amendment of the mechanism related to the compensation of suppliers for the difference between the price cap and the acquisition price.
• Removal of the existing aid scheme for household consumers and certain non-household consumers.
• The supplemental tax on electricity producers (80% applied to the difference between the average monthly price and RON 450 (EUR 91)/MWh) remains in force. However, the following new provisions are included: (i) an exception for new production capacities and (ii) a computation method.
• Introduction of an obligation for suppliers to stock minimum 30% of the total quantity of natural gas required to be delivered to final consumers. The obligation applies between 1 April 2021 and 31 October 2022.
• Introduction of a new obligation for natural gas producers (onshore and offshore) to sell quantities of natural gas to suppliers of household consumers and to thermal energy producers/suppliers at a regulated price, 150 RON/MWh, respectively 250 RON/MWh. The related gas quantities are however excepted from the windfall taxes imposed by EGO 7/2013 and Offshore Law 256/2018.
• Suspension of the gas release programme between 1 April 2022 and 31 December 2022.
The compatibility of these measures with the EU legislation remains to be analysed. Also, the overall effects on the economy are questionable especially considering the supplemental tax and the regulated prices for producers.
Anca Mihăilescu, Associated Partner Noerr