Plombé par le « bouclier tarifaire », EDF exige 8 milliards d’euros à son actionnaire, l’Etat

Le groupe fragilisé financièrement, par ailleurs lourdement endetté, doit mettre en œuvre un ambitieux programme de construction de nouveaux réacteurs nucléaires EPR en France en parallèle du développement des renouvelables.

EDF today filed an appeal before the Council of State, and a claim for compensation, for an amount estimated to date at 8,340 million euros, before the State », announced this Tuesday the electricity producer in a press release. EDF applies to conditions imposed on it by the government under the tariff shield ».

To contain the increase in regulated electricity rates to 4% in 2022, as promised, the Government has forced EDF to increase the annual quota of electricity sold at a reduced price to its competitors by 20%, up to 120 TWh (versus 100 TWh before). This sale is made within the framework of the mechanism called Regulated access to historic nuclear electricity » (Arenh), regularly denounced by EDF. The group is thus forced to sell its production at a bargain price, at a time when electricity reaches peaks in the wholesale markets.

The State wants EDF to sell even more electricity at knockdown prices to its competitors

The State will continue to defend Arenh’s elevation system before the State Council, which once again recalled last July the general interest associated with this decision. »we justified with AFP on Tuesday night in Bercy, which estimates that the steps of EDF don’t come by surprise ». The same source defended the importance of the “tariff shield ». Without these measures, in particular the additional volume of Arenh, household bills would have increased by 35%, including taxes »it was argued.

The State’s decision had been formalized in a decree on March 11 and then in two decrees. EDF indicated on Tuesday that its approach is based on an in-depth legal analysis » Y about the damage suffered » under these texts.

The President and CEO of EDF had indicated at its annual general meeting that he had sent the State a prior administrative appeal to request the withdrawal of the decree and the orders of March 2022 relating to this allocation. » additional nuclear volumes, the group recalls.

Jean-Bernard Lévy, whose state now wants to accelerate the succession within the framework of the planned renationalization of EDF, had announced an elegant appeal in May, to which the state had not followed up. Both the price and the conditions of these assignments penalize us considerably »argued the CEO.

Electricity prices: “After having fought it”, EDF saw the State’s decision “as a real shock”, says its CEO, Jean-Bernard Lévy

EDF, which must buy the volumes of electricity at exorbitant prices in the markets to resell them to its competitors, estimates that the measure will reduce its gross operating surplus (Ebitda) by around 10,000 million euros this year.

corrosion problems

A bill that is added to another major setback: the drop in its nuclear production, linked to corrosion problems in certain reactors, will cost it no less than an additional 24,000 million euros, according to the latest estimates published at the end of July.

Corrosion in nuclear reactors: the impact on EDF’s results increases to reach…18,000 million euros in 2022

The group thus financially weakened, also heavily indebted, must implement an ambitious program to build new EPR nuclear reactors in France in parallel with the development of renewable energies. This strategy at the heart of French climate policy has become even more of a priority with the invasion of Ukraine, which has highlighted the problem of dependence on fossil fuels.

To have free rein, the Government decided in July to renationalize 100% of the group, of which it now owns 84%. This operation must be carried out through a public purchase offer (OPA) of 9,700 million euros, which the Government plans to launch at the beginning of September. EDF announcements on Tuesday do not modify in any way the principle, methods and timetable » of the takeover bid, says Bercy.

(with AFP)