The great blow to the electricity companies for the “extraordinary benefits”, as Pedro Sánchez described them, will finally be mitigated. So they have agreed in extremis the companies and the Government because Sánchez knew, from the first moment, that his rule had serious signs of being judicially torpedoed. Neither the penalties for fixed-price gas contracts previously closed, nor the penalty included in the reform in terms of reduced revenue from CO2 They will be maintained as approved by the Council of Ministers. A relief that companies sought to normalize the reform announced with great fanfare and that Podemos celebrated so much.
Pedro Sánchez’s great fear that the electricity companies could destabilize his Cabinet due to the measures against the rise in the price of electricity and gas, has been resolved this Wednesday with the agreement that the vice president has reached Teresa Ribera and the CEO of Iberdrola, to whose text OKDIARIO has had exclusive access.
The president of the company, Ignacio Sánchez Galán, had radically manifested itself against the proposal approved by the Council of Ministers and which Congress must validate this Thursday, considering it a «terrifying interventionism». In addition, he pointed out that the company was going to rethink its entire investment policy in Spain due to the fiscal punishment regulated by Sánchez: a punishment that, basically, made the great sacrifice to reduce the electricity bill somewhat, was the one made by the companies and not by the state. With the handshake on Wednesday everyone seems to have relaxed their postures.
As this newspaper has learned, the Executive has agreed that “the reduction foreseen in RDL 17/2021 for the price of gas does not affect those customers with contracts at fixed prices.” The Government had capped the price of gas in the marginalist auction, so that after a certain price it could not continue to rise.
Every time that standard price was exceeded, the truth is that the energy companies had to continue generating electricity, but assuming costs that they could not transfer to the final price. Quite a fiscal blow. Well, now, for fixed price contracts that penalty disappears.
An agreement has also been reached to reduce a second penalty for electricity companies: “The need for the reduction of CO2 income, contemplated in the Draft Bill that is processed in Parliament, to be modified” has also been reached. This point is intended to limit the impact on energy companies of the rise in the price of emission rights and also reduce the damage caused by the elimination of the payment to non-CO2 emitting energies for not polluting.
In addition to these two points, Ribera and the representatives of the electricity companies have also come to the conclusion that the decisions that are being adopted such as those of Royal Decree Law 17/2021 must “confirm the time horizon” with a “transitory character». And they are also conspiring to “promote the necessary measures to ensure gas supply during the coming winter.”
And is that one of the fears of the Government is that in the coming months Spain may suffer service cuts as a result of the closure of the gas pipeline that passes through Morocco. That gas pipe cut, Algeria has scheduled for October 31.
A few days ago, Foreign Minister José Manuel Albares traveled to Algiers to discuss the matter. Although in parliament he assured that he should not suffer from the lack of this energy, the reality is quite different, since Spain depends on Algerian gas, supplying 45% of Spanish demand.