Portugal and Spain will officially ask the European Commission on Wednesday to extend the temporary ceiling in the Iberian Peninsula of the prices of natural gas and coal that are used by power plants, announced the Portuguese Minister of the Environment, Duarte Cordeiro, Reuters reports.
Admitting that the Iberian Peninsula has weak energy links with the rest of Europe, the European Commission allowed the two countries to initially cap prices at 40 euros per MWh, with the price limit projected at 50 euros for the next 12 months.
The request to extend the mechanism will be made officially on Wednesday, at the meeting of the European Commission, Cordeiro announced, according to Agerpres.
With this cap, electricity consumers in Portugal saw a 20% reduction in the price of electricity, which allowed them to save around 489 million euros by the end of 2022, Cordeiro explained.
“Obviously, we want the extension of the mechanism in the Iberian Peninsula, under the same conditions, because it has positive effects,” explained the Portuguese Minister of the Environment.
The Spanish Minister of Energy, Teresa Ribera, who will participate in Wednesday’s meeting of the European Commission, recently stated that Madrid will request the extension of the mechanism at least until the end of 2024.
Portugal applies the mechanism only to the gas price because it no longer has coal plants.
Portugal and Spain have convinced the European Commission that they should be allowed to intervene on their own electricity prices, which are often artificially inflated by expensive fossil fuels, even though the region is heavy on renewable energy and has few interconnections with the rest of Europe.