France pledges to restrict EDF utility hikes in 2015-18

12/12/2013 00:48 Electricity Market

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France wants to restrict state-controlled utility EDF's regulated electricity tariff increases between 2% and 3% per year or less per year over the period 2015-2018, which would see a new calculation method to take effect, said an official source in the Elysée Palace.

This summer, the government unveiled the biggest increase in power prices in at least a decade to cover rising costs at EDF, giving the green light to the company to increase tariffs by 5 percent in August 2013 and a further 5 percent in August 2014. Before the rise this summer, the French Energy Regulatory Commission (CRE) had estimated that the average electricity bill for French household is expected to jump 30% by 2017 to cover the costs of EDF under the law on the new organization of the electricity market (Nome). The gap between regulated tariffs and EDF's costs was estimated at 1.47 billion euros last year. Electricity prices have become a hot political topic across Europe as subsidies for renewable energy have augmented electricity bills, triggering protest from consumers which are struggling with shrinking purchasing power.

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