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European Commission: Estonia should adhere to agreement with renewable energy producers

Estonian news - eteap February 19, 2013

Baltic News Service, 19.02.2013

The European commissioner for energy, Guenther Oettinger, said in a letter to the Estonian Renewable Energy Association that the government ought to observe the agreements concluded with renewable energy producers earlier, the daily Eesti Paevaleht says.

“The Commission is convinced that a stable investment framework is the key condition for the release of the desired investments in order to achieve the 2020 goals, in particular the 20 percent renewable energy target,” Oettinger said according to the letter published in Estonian. “In these circumstances we deem it essential for the government to honor the obligations it has assumed in order to protect the above-mentioned principles.”

The head of the Renewable Energy Association, Rene Tammist, sent a letter to Oettinger in November complaining about the government’s plan to retroactively reduce renewable energy support.

Spokespeople for the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications told the paper that the commissioner did not bring up the issue at his meeting with Minister of Economy and Communications Juhan Parts at the end of last year.

The parliamentary Economic Affairs Committee decided at the end of January to cut wind energy support to 93 euros per megawatt-hour and reinstate the 600 gigawatt-hour cap the abolition of which for existing producers had been previously agreed. The agreement was violated also in regard to the support rates subject to approval by the competition authority and support for own consumption by the power generating parties, the association said.

Existing producers of renewable energy stand to incur losses of approximately 40-43 million euros as a direct result of the decision made by the committee, the Renewable Energy Association said.


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