The National Agency for Energy Regulation (ANRE) proposed in public debates organised today, reduction of natural gas tariff for ultimate consumers by 20.3 per cent on average MDL 4,420 per 1000 m3 of gas (without VAT). The tariffs for supply and final consumers are to be approved at a perspective meeting, while date of its convocation has not been announced.
The head of the Department for Economic Analysis and Tariffs of ANRE, Alexandru Mija, said at the meeting that regulator took into account when setting tariff plan a lower gas transport cost than that requested by gas supplier. However, technological consumption and technical losses indicators were adjusted, leading to decrease into gas distribution tariff.
Company Moldovagaz called for 11.4 per cent reduction in average tariff for final users, from MDL 5,545 per 1000 m3 of gas to MDL 4,914.97 (excluding VAT of 8 per cent). At the tariff estimate, company took into account a gas import price of $178 for 1000 m3, by an exchange rate MDL 17.68 for $1, and consumption of 1 billion 50 million m3 of gas in 2018.
The stock of historical debt of Moldovagaz to Gazprom for consumption on right bank of the Dniester is $726 million.
More experts mentioned that reduction of gas tariff could be even higher if to take into account some cost factors, better network management, fair redistribution of gas transit revenue – 71 per cent of those pipelines being managed by Chisinau. It was also mentioned that although Moldova has got gas transport and distribution capacities of 17.5 billion m3 a year, just over 6 per cent used and transit capacity of 42 billion m3 a year only half of it.
The experts also proposed to examine possibility of quarterly revaluation of tariffs, given that gas import price has been set for each quarter, while effective exchange rate of MDL/$ being known.
Interviewed by agency, expert of IDIS Viitorul, Victor Parlicov, said after public meeting that ANRE triggered tariff review “in a fair and professional manner”. On the other hand, he said that it was late to re – evaluate tariffs, only after there came signals from political and civil society. “There might be questions from consumer, why in setting the tariff a rate of about MDL 17.60 for $1 was taken into account, if current rate is below MDL 17.00”, said Parlicov. He added that costs covered by company for 2015, 2016, 2017 were not approved by ANRE. Also, 23 thousand kilometers of pipelines, many of which were built out of money of population, local and central public authorities, only 8 thousand are taken to Moldovagaz balance, rest are only administered by it, which is again a problem.
ANRE announced on organisation of a public debate, in which there will be set tariffs for transport, natural gas distribution, as well as final consumers.