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NBB rules in favour of Electrabel

NBB rules in favour of Electrabel

18.4.2011 10:26

In a dispute between De CREG (Belgian Regulator for Electricity and Gas) and Electrabel concerning the nuclear interest (and the to be paid uranium tax), the NBB (National Bank of Belgium) ruled that the profit made on nuclear energy amounts to € 750-900m (€ 652-783m Electrabel share). This info stems from an article in this weekends edition of Le Soir.

The Belgian government asked the NBBto intervene in the dispute between De CREG and Electrabel concerning the nuclear interest and asked them to write a study of their own. These numbers now indicate that Electrabel has won the dispute over De CREG. We remind that De CREG calculated the nuclear interest at € 1.75-1.95bn while Electrabel put forward a number of € 750m (€ 652m Electrabel share).

Luc Coene, the Governor of the National Bank of Belgium, will present his figures in front of the Belgian government in the course of this week: Monday afternoon the outcome will be discussed with prime minister Yves Leterme and Wednesday the details will be presented.

The Chairman of de CREG, Guido Camps, already confirmed his resignation if the numbers of Electrabel will be used in the calculation of the uranium tax.

Conclusion:
Over the last three years the Belgian government levied a uranium tax of € 250m/year (33% of nuclear interest), the largest part being paid by Electrabel. The outcome from the study of the NBB could eliminate the risk that Electrabel would need to pay a higher tax.

The Belgian government also still needs to decide on the life extension of the oldest nuclear power stations by 10 years. Going forward one could use the calculation method of the NBB, which would lower the risk that the levies to be paid for extending thenuclear lifetime by 10years could be higher than € 215-245m previously agreed.

We stick to our Accumulate rating.


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