Spain’s Power System Posts First Surplus in More Than 10 Years

(Bloomberg) — Spain’s power system registered its first
surplus in more than a decade, as sweeping changes to energy
regulation begin to pay off for the euro zone’s fourth largest

Revenue exceeded electricity-system costs by 550 million
euros ($529 million) in 2014, the Spanish Energy Ministry said
in an e-mailed statement.

“This confirms that the electricity-tariff deficit that put
the system on the brink of collapse has been eliminated
definitively,” the ministry said, adding that the shift will
lead to a decline in energy bills “progressively” as previous
debt is paid off.

Spain’s power system racked up debts of more than 20
billion euros through 2013 as the revenue power companies were
allowed to book under the government-controlled system exceeded
the amount raised from customers. As part of the 2013 reforms,
the government cut back on subsidies to renewable-power
generators, roiling the clean-energy industry.

Abengoa SA, a Seville-based solar-power producer, sought
protection from creditors this week after the loss of subsidies
coupled with a slowdown in Brazil and slumping oil prices left
it struggling to service its debts.

To contact the reporter on this story:
Maria Tadeo in Madrid at

To contact the editors responsible for this story:
Fergal O’Brien at
Ben Sills, Tony Czuczka

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