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“I am convinced that the solution we will reach with EDF Chairman Luc Rémont is a good one", said Le Maire at an event held by the GHR, a union representing those in the hotel and restaurant sectors.
The minister added that the agreement "will enable us to regain sovereignty over our prices".
Le Maire’s optimism follows months of tense negotiations between the French government and state-controlled power company EDF.
EDF’s current price regulation model is set to expire at the end of 2025, but when deciding upon a new approach, the government has locked horns with the power supplier.
Whilst the state is looking to keep electricity bills down for households and businesses, EDF hopes to maximise revenue in order to boost investment.
At one point in the negotiation process, the stand-off even threw doubts over the fate of Luc Rémont, CEO of EDF.
Appointed to the post just over a year ago by French President Emmanuel Macron, some feared that Rémont would resign over the state’s demands.
The government wants the new reference price for electricity to be close to EDF's nuclear production costs.
The French Commission that regulates energy recently estimated these costs to be €60 per MWh, well below EDF's estimate of around €70.
Speaking of the expected deal, Le Maire said: “We wanted to strike a balance between affordable prices, competitive prices, and prices that would give EDF the financial room to invest in the future, and that’s what the outcome will be."
He continued: “We are regaining sovereignty over our prices, because we are providing long-term transparency on electricity costs, so that you, the consumers, whether individuals or businesses, are not exposed to another electricity crisis.”
Posted on 13 Nov 2023 13:00 link