Gran Bretaña nacionaliza empresa de energía debido a los significativos aumentos de precios al consumidor

GRAN BRETAÑA

GRAN BRETAÑA. Los precios del gas y la electricidad en ese país se han cuadruplicado en lo que va del año, razón por la cual se ha tomado esta radical medida con Bulb

GRAN BRETAÑA. Debido a los injustificados y muy significativos aumentos en los precios del gas y la electricidad que la empresa generadora y distribuidora Bulb aplicaba a sus un millón 700 mil clientes, el gobierno británico ha decidido nacionalizarla, por lo que en los próximos días designará un administrador para tal efecto, aplicando con ello una medida que no se había visto desde la crisis bancaria mundial de 2008, y que nunca se había visto para el sector energético.

A pesar de ser clasificada como empresa de “energía limpia”, la electricidad que genera Bulb a partir de tecnologías eólica y fotovoltaica solamente representa el 2.1 por ciento del total que la empresa distribuye, debido a que las condiciones climáticas recientes no permiten mayor operación de dichos métodos.

Por ello es que la empresa ha dependido cada vez más de combustibles fósiles para poder solventar las necesidades energéticas de sus clientes, sin embargo el alto costo de esos insumos, aunado a que la empresa intenta sacar un mayor provecho de la situación con un excesivo margen de utilidad, han provocado que los costos al consumidor crezcan de manera inusitada.

GRAN BRETAÑA. De acuerdo con el gobierno británico, los precios del gas y la electricidad en ese país se han cuadruplicado en lo que va del año, razón por la cual se ha tomado esta radical medida con Bulb, primera empresa en sufrir las consecuencias, pero podrían seguir otras, sin que esto signifique la completa estatización del mercado energético, pues le estaría reservado un porcentaje menor al 50 por ciento a la inversión privada, informó Ofgem, el organismo gubernamental regulador de energía.

U.K. Nationalizes Energy Supplier for 1.7 Million Households

06:07 PM IST, 22 Nov 2021

The U.K. government will temporarily run gas and electricity supplier Bulb as the energy crunch deepens, the first forced nationalization of a British company since the 2008 banking crisis.

The government and energy regulator Ofgem will ensure uninterrupted supplies to Bulb’s 1.7 million customers by appointing a special administrator. Costs for running the seventh-largest retailer will be supported by Treasury.

The process is being carried out “in the quickest possible timeframe,” a government spokesperson said in a statement. “Bulb customers do not need to do anything, there will be no disruption to supply or current energy prices, and credit balances are protected.”

GRAN BRETAÑA. Ofgem said it will apply to a court to appoint an administrator who will run Bulb. 

This is the first time the measure has been used in the energy sector, signaling a “tipping point” in the U.K.’s energy crisis, said Justina Miltienyte, an energy policy expert at Uswitch Ltd., a price-comparison service. Soaring gas and power prices have caused 21 suppliers to collapse since August, with most having sold energy at much lower fixed costs before prices almost quadrupled.

U.K. Nationalizes Energy Supplier for 1.7 Million Households
GRAN BRETAÑA

“Bulb will need quite a significant injection of cash that’s likely to come from the Treasury in the short term,” said Ellen Fraser, a partner at consultancy Baringa Partners. “In the long term, the expectation is it will be charged to the industry and will find its way through to customer bills to recoup that cost.” 

The nationalization comes after large energy suppliers have repeatedly warned they would soon struggle to take on more clients. Before today, more than 2 million U.K. customers were forced to switch suppliers, stretching the ability of companies left in the market to take on more. 

Not including the costs associated with Bulb, about 2 billion pounds ($2.6 billion), or 75 pounds a household, will be added to bills next year to pay for failed suppliers, according to Martin Young, a utilities analyst at Investec Bank Plc. “It is not hard to see why consumers might be hugely aggrieved,” he said.

The government will work with Ofgem to find a way to move the customers to other suppliers over a longer time frame than the Supplier of Last Resort process would have allowed.

GRAN BRETAÑA. Uswitch advises households not to cancel payments or to switch suppliers as there are unlikely to be better deals available elsewhere right now.

“The administrator may decide to close the supplier down in the future and move customers elsewhere,” Miltienyte said. “But customers will be kept informed by Ofgem and the administrators about what will happen next.” 

U.K. benchmark natural gas prices are now trading at almost four times what they were at the start of the year. As well as being tied into selling energy to customers for much less than they can buy it for, suppliers have estimated that they are losing about 1,000 pounds on each customer on the regulated price cap.

U.K. Nationalizes Energy Supplier for 1.7 Million Households
GRAN BRETAÑA

Bulb had been exploring funding options, but high prices — most recently relating to the slow approval process for the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline to Europe from Russia — had derailed any agreement, the company said in a statement on its website.

The appointment of a special administrator will limit the risk of market chaos created by trying to quickly transfer a large number of customers to another supplier. 

“We’ve put in place the powers and robust processes to ensure customers don’t experience disruption to their energy supply, and costs are minimized if a supplier does exit the market,” Boris Johnson’s official spokesman Max Blain told reporters.

Gran Bretaña nacionaliza empresa de energía debido a los significativos aumentos de precios al consumidor