“As part of preparations for the opening of Chapter 15: Energy, we are working very actively on harmonizing regulations and adopting the recommendations of the European Union. While significant progress has been made in the previous period in the field of forming compulsory reserves of oil and oil derivatives, further liberalization of the energy and gas market is, at this moment, the basic precondition for opening this chapter”, said Mirjana Filipović, State Secretary at the Ministry of Mining and Energy, while discussing Ministry’s plans for 2019 at the Briefing Session with members of the American Chamber of Commerce in Serbia.
Speaking about the gas market in Serbia, Filipović, who is also the Chairman of the Negotiating Group with the EU, said that one of the main indicators of the importance of the security of gas supply, is that European Union provided almost 50 million euros for funding the gas interconnection between Serbia and Bulgaria, whose construction will begin next year.
“There is still a lot of work ahead in this domain, because implementation of major reforms takes more time. In the meantime, the Ministry will continue to adjust its legislation to the “winter energy package” of EU regulations and we believe that this will be reflected in the next European Commission reports”, concluded State Secretary Filipović.
By the end of November 2018, Government of Serbia extended the validity of the Decree on Incentive Measures for Electricity Generation from Renewable Energy Sources and High-Efficiency Cogeneration of Electricity and Heat by the end of 2019. On this occasion, representatives of the Ministry confirmed that the introduction of auction system, as a manner of bidding and setting the electricity prices for take-out of electricity from renewable sources (wind and solar) is planned for the following period, whereby a more specific model and procedure is yet to be determined. “We expect that the first auctions will be carried out next year”, Filipović said, pointing out that the participation of renewable energy sources in final consumption by 2021 would be close to the 27% target set by the European Union.
Đorđe Popović, Chairman of the AmCham Energy Committee, emphasized the importance of implementing the recommendations of the Energy Community and the adoption of EU legislation for further development of the market in Serbia. “Companies are particularly interested in the plans of the Ministry regarding the development of the renewable energy market, but also the improvement of energy efficiency, the adoption of the new energy contracting models, and the creation of preconditions for the widespread use of electric vehicles in Serbia. As the AmCham Energy Committee, we are very pleased that the Ministry recognizes the importance of the participation of the business sector in the dialogue on these important topics and that we will have the opportunity to cooperate in the upcoming period”, Popović said.
The AmCham Energy Committee was established in 2017 with the intention of establishing constructive dialogue with all relevant state institutions in order to improve the regulatory framework in the field of energy and its efficient implementation. The focus of the Committee is the implementation and improvement of specific regulations in the field of renewable energy sources and energy efficiency, improving the legal framework for public-private partnerships in this area, supporting the development of novel energy businesses, and other issues of relevance to members of the American Chamber of Commerce.