Closing the FiT system, renewable energy sources (RES) projects are turning to the electricity market, which is a logical consequence of the long-term decline in technology prices and the consequent increase in their competitiveness compared to conventional sources. How should RES be placed in the electricity market in the new circumstances? What are the possibilities of integration into the electricity market of those RES projects that are already online and in the FiT system or coming out of it, but also projects that are in the development phase? What are all the conditions that need to be met to make this integration even faster? These are some of the key issues addressed at the workshop ‘Renewable Sources – Development of the Electricity Market’, organized by the Croatian Renewable Energy Sources Association (RESC) and the consulting company Megajoule, on Thursday, November 19, 2020, in Zagreb.
After the introductory speech by Maja Pokrovac, Director of OIEH, representatives of Megajoule (Ivan Gašić, electricity market expert), experienced electricity trader TrailStone (Ante Pogačić, Director) and the Croatian Electricity Exchange – CROPEX (Silvio Brkić, President of the Management Board) introduced a workshop and panel discussion. They presented the possibilities of the appearance of RES producers on the market, the legislative framework and further preconditions for stronger integration of RES. An interesting example of a solar auction in Portugal held a few months ago (700 MW at 12 different locations, six winning companies), opportunities and benefits of concluding long-term purchase agreements (PPAs), with special emphasis on corporate PPAs (cPPAs), has also been presented. The reasons why they are attractive to both developers and end consumers have also been listed.
Also, emphasis was placed on the role of CROPEX in the integration of RES projects, further development of their new products needed to integrate RES projects into the electricity market as smoothly as possible, and expectations in 2021. The right of opting has been clarified, i.e. the right of choice given to subsidized producers enabling them to leave the incentive system and access the free wholesale electricity market even before the expiration of the Electricity Purchase Agreement while continuing to receive an adjusted incentive price. It basically makes the difference between the incentive price and the reference market price. It was especially emphasized that the right to opt is not an obligation and that those who opt have the right to return to the incentive system on a monthly basis. The German experience of introducing the right to opt and its benefits has also been presented.
As part of the workshop, two round tables were held under the moderation of Edo Jerkić (Member of the Management Board, Megajoule) and Vanesa Vujanić (Law Office Vanesa Vujanić) with the participation of: Ivo Milatić (State Secretary for Energy, MINGOR), Silvio Brkić , CROPEX), Ivan Gašić (electricity market expert, Megajoule), Vladimir Bencun (project finance manager, HPB), Kristina Čelić (Head of the Sector for Energy Markets and Infrastructure, Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Sources, MELE), Danijel Beljan (Head of Department of EKO Balance Group, HROTE), Ante Pogačić (Director, TrailStone), Tomislav Ćurković (Director, Encro).
The challenges that need to be addressed when it comes to the integration of RES into the system, the transition of HROTE to the open market and the need to free HROTE from excessive legal restrictions, new banking risks, opportunities for stock market development and new trading instruments and the need for stronger market development. The importance of European energy integration, the arrival of new entrants in the market and the sale of energy in other markets were also emphasized. It was concluded that the opening of the market will certainly bring new players and increase the liquidity of the stock market and improve our system so that we no longer need to resort to imported black energy.