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Returning the regulators' steering role to the central government will allow control of fuel and electricity rates: Nahle


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    Rocío Nahle, secretaria de Energía. Foto: Cuartoscuro

    The federal government intends that thanks to the activities of state companies: the Federal Electricity Commission (CFE) and Petroleos Mexicanos(Pemex), the control of fuel, gas and electricity rates in the country is returned to the State, for which it will also be necessary that sectoral regulators lose their management and budgetary autonomy, said the head of the Secretariat of Energy, Rocio Nahle, at the Meeting of the Commission of Legal Studies of the Federal Government.

    According to the head of Energy, the Energy Regulatory Commission(CRE) and the National Hydrocarbons Commission (CNH), in addition to the manager of the electricity grid, the National Energy Control Center (Cenace), should return to be part of the Secretariat of Energy(Sener), because it is who directs the national public policy.

    According to Nahle, since the opening of 2015, the CRE has granted permits for 134,000 megawatts of new electricity capacity, when the country consumes at most 50,000 megawatts per hour.

    "This got out of control, the balance is how much we need and how much we produce, even up to a percentage of reserve that can be 10%," said Nahle, "there is talk of energy balance and why it is important that the CRE and the CNH return to the Secretariat of Energy because there the planning of the country is carried and is that the Executive requires retaking control of electricity rates."

    Today has resumed control of fuel prices, with the Special Tax on Production and Services(IEPS) which has allowed that this week, for example, the consumer price of regular gasoline is 20 pesos, when in California rose to 26 pesos. In addition, the price of LP gas was also controlled and the goal is to retake the price of electricity prices, through the control of 54% of electricity generation and always below inflation for all tariff sectors.

    On the other hand, the official justified that the constitutional reform to be discussed in Congress to amend Articles 25, 27 and 28 Constitutional is not against renewable electricity generation, but the subsidies that the CFE gives to private companies in the design of the energy model of the 2015 reform.

    And is that, in the face of criticism for the possible disappearance of clean energy certificates as incentives for renewable generation, the state has paid 6,000 million pesos of clean energy certificates, an amount that has cushioned all the investment made by private parties (which was also financed by development banks), and if they continue, in 20 years will have paid 100,000 million pesos.

    "What we say is that these CELs (clean energy certificates) should be eliminated, we do not need them and we do not need to securitize energy, it is the last straw," said Nahle.

    In the same forum, the CFE general director, Manuel Bartlett, explained that the Energy Regulatory Commission is a body appointed by the Senate of the Republic, but it is not a body that has political responsibility, it is simply a body that exercises the main and fundamental functions of the National Electric System.

    "Here there have also been many comments regarding this situation, it is said: "this way, the Federal Electricity Commission will no longer have counterweights, and this is absolutely false, counterweights exist in the government, because the CFE will have to operate according to the law, the counterweight is the law and the body to establish counterweights to the Executive is the Legislative Branch in the Constitution," he said.

    Therefore, he considered that there is no reason to have a body that manages transcendental functions of the State, such as the National Electric System, a body that has no political responsibility.

    karol.garcia@eleconomista.mx

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