The National Electric Company (NEK), the Kozloduy N-plant and the Maritza East 2 thermal power plant will merge under new government plans, said MP Valentin Nikolov (GERB) of the parliamentary economy, energy and tourism committee. He was participating Thursday in a conference on RES projects in Bulgaria. Currently, NEK, Kozloduy and Maritza East 2 are subsidiaries of the Bulgarian Energy Holding (BEH).
Speaking to journalists later, Nikolov specified that the companies will merge under NEK to prevent the withdrawal of capital. In his words, currently NEK has 70 per cent attracted capital against 30 per cent own capital. NEK and the Electricity System Operator (ESO) are set to become separate entities.
Under one of the plans, the new larger NEK, ESO, Bulgargaz and Bulgartransgaz will make up the future BEH, said Nikolov. According to him, the new structure will help avoid a situation where NEK and Kozloduy compete on the international markets, as they are both owned by the state.
Under another plan, the electricity generation companies will separate from the electricity distribution companies. The electricity distribution companies will either be joined in another holding or will become a department under the Economy, Energy and Tourism Ministry.
Nikolov also said there were problems with the cold reserve from the back-up energy production capacities maintained by the thermal power plants in Bobov Dol and Varna. In his words, they do not maintain even half of the required 1,000 MW in backup capacities. If a 1,000 MW generating unit stops operating, the hydropower plants will have to bear the brunt.