EC to probe German fee waivers

The European Commission

The European Commission

The European Commission soon will open a formal investigation into whether exemptions to the renewable energy surcharge (EEG surcharge) granted to energy-intensive industries constitute state aid and are in breach of EU rules.

"We will open an investigation into the German exemption before Christmas," EU Competition Commissioner Joaquin Almunia said in Brussels yesterday, according to his spokesman Antoine Colombani.

The EC had received a complaint launched by a German association representing private consumers and SMEs.

The surcharge – currently €0.053 ($0.07) per kWh – finances the difference between renewable feed-in tariffs and power prices at the energy exchange. The less heavy industry pays, the more small companies and private households are burdened with additional costs.

Germany’s hitherto opposition Social Democrats (SPD) and Greens have campaigned Log in to read complete article.

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