Five Croatian Projects on Updated EU Projects of Common Interest List
On 18 November, the European Commission (EC) adopted the first State of the Energy Union Report. The report describes progress made over the last nine months and identifies key action areas for 2016; it also provides policy conclusions for member states. Further, several Energy Union deliverables and reports were adopted and published, including the second list of 195 Projects of Common Interest (PCI), identifying five projects from Croatia.
Regarding the policy conclusions for Croatia, the EC’s main observation is that competition in the Croatian energy market is still quite limited, adding that there is currently no commodity exchange or gas hub, while wholesale gas trading is based on bilateral contracts. A large impediment is price regulation on the gas wholesale market and retail markets for households, which prevents market entry and healthy competition.
The Commission notes that both electricity and gas prices for households in Croatia are below the EU average, urging the government to step up its efforts to deregulate wholesale prices and to take necessary measures to remove barriers to the gas importing/exporting process. According to the energy report, Croatia’s energy trade deficit is significantly larger than the EU average, and has slightly increased in the period 2006-2014. The oil trade deficit remains the largest component, with the gas trade deficit also increasing over the above period…