Fico: Energy Prices to Return to 2016 Levels across Slovakia


Bratislava, February 6 (TASR) – Electricity will make a U-turn back to the level seen in 2016 for the whole of Slovakia, said Prime Minister Robert Fico and Economy Minister Peter Ziga (both Smer-SD) following their talks with representatives of power utilities and the Office for Regulation of Network Industries (URSO) on Monday, adding that there’s no reason to increase energy prices.

“Based on an agreement with power distributors, URSO will draw up a new decree on price regulation in power engineering as early as on Monday. The decree won’t apply only to central Slovakia but to the whole of Slovak territory and will return terms to the levels seen in 2016. It will be approved via fast-track legislative proceedings and could be published in the Collection of Laws practically immediately, as it doesn’t need to undergo any inter-departmental review. The office can make a direct decision,” specified Fico.

As far as electricity prices are concerned, this in practice means that 2017 prices will be at the same level seen in 2016. “We see no reason for any increase in electricity prices if the market price of the commodity is decreasing. The drop must be reflected in invoices for 2017,” underlined Fico.

Fico recommended that people should wait for new invoices for advance payments to be prepared by their electricity providers based on the new decree. “If somebody has already paid an advance payment [for a bill] that they’ve received, it will be refunded to them within a year, but they won’t be deprived of a single euro,” stressed the prime minister.

URSO’s new decree won’t deal with fees for circuit breakers, which, in many cases, caused customers’ electricity bills to grow considerably year-on-year at the beginning of this year, said Ziga.

URSO head Jozef Holjencik, who announced his resignation from the post last Thursday (February 2), will formally resign at the URSO Regulatory Council meeting on Tuesday (February 7). He’ll subsequently send a letter to this effect to President Andrej Kiska, said Fico.