Signed Decree №79 / 2020 dated 12.03.2020 on amendments to the Regulations on the National Investment Council concerning changes in the composition of the Council. The new secretary of the Council – Varshalomidze Levan.
Except of the agriculture land turnover issue, all parliamentary meeting during this month was about emergency steps aimed at preventing and combating COVID-19.
Extraordinary plenary meeting of Parliament 30.03.2020:
An extraordinary plenary meeting of Parliament was held today. Among the issues discussed were:
– the issue of adoption of draft laws in connection with the spread of coronavirus disease – as a basis adopted drafts law No. 3268 (on the provision of treatment of coronavirus disease), 3271 (on the criminalization of export (shipment) across the customs border of Ukraine anti-epidemic goods), 3275 (provision of additional social and economic guarantees);
– budget issues. The draft law “On the State Budget of Ukraine for 2020” No. 3279 did not garner the required number of votes and was then forwarded for further elaboration to the profile committee.
– banking system issues: 2571-d on amendments to some legislative acts of Ukraine on certain issues of banking system functioning (text is not yet available);
– agricultural land circulation: 2178-10 (will enter into force on 01 July 2021):
agricultural land will be circulated in two stages:
– from July 1, 2021, until January 1, 2024, buyers will be individuals – citizens of Ukraine;
– from January 1, 2024, legal entities owned by Ukrainian citizens will also be able to buy.
Extraordinary plenary meeting of Parliament 16.03.2020:
the Draft Law 3219 was voted, that included quarantine established by the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine in the list of force majeure events (came into force on March 17, 2020), another draft law 3220 exempts land and non-residential real estate taxes and payments between March 1, and April 30, 2020, and extends tax reporting.
At its meeting on March 25, 2020, the Government supported the introduction of a state-level emergency situation (i.e. on the whole territory of Ukraine) for 30 days period. Thus, an emergency situation throughout Ukraine was introduced from March 25 to April 24, 2020.
The newly elected Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal offered the new composition of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine. Two ministers have already been changed during March – of finance and of health.
With Minister Orzhel gone in early March, the Ministry is still headless. Shubin Vitalii is acting Minister of Energy and Environmental Protection.
The Regulator at the meeting on 03/13/2020 approved the Report on the assessment of adequacy (sufficiency) of generating capacities to cover the projected demand for electricity and provision of the necessary reserve and the draft resolution of the NEURC “On Approval of the Transmission System Development Plan for 2020 – 2029” developed by the TSO Ukrenergo.
The report emphasizes, amongst other things, the need for commissioning of 2GW of quick-start generation capacities and 2GB of quick start reserves on the basis of energy storage systems by 2030 in order to ensure the operational safety of the Ukrainian Power System.
Transmission System Development Plan for 2020 – 2029:
Over 10 years Ukrenergo plans to invest 69 billion UAH into the development of the transmission system: the major part of such investments (57 billion UAH) the Company plans to attract long-term loans with low-interest rates (to 3 percent) from IFI for significant reduction of the burden on the tariff. The plan was discussed during March. The next step will be its consideration at the open meeting of the Regulator.
Generation of RES in Ukraine in some hours already exceeds the generation from TPP:
The generation of electricity from renewable sources (RES) in Ukraine, such as wind and solar power, in some hours already exceeds electricity production at thermal power plants.
According to the TSO data, on March 15, for the first time in 4 hours from 11:00 to 15:00, the excess of electricity production from RES over coal TPPs was first observed.
Quarantine may cause 8.2% reduction in electricity consumption in March 2020:
Since the introduction of the quarantine on March 12, due to the threat of the COVID-19 coronavirus epidemic, electricity consumption in Ukraine has decreased by almost 4% and monthly consumption is projected to decline by 8.2% compared to the same period in 2019.
Regulator Approves Guaranteed Buyer Cost of Services for January and February 2020:
The decision was made at the meeting of the Regulator on March 20, 2020. The approved cost of the service was UAH 1.37 billion (excluding VAT) in January and UAH 2.6 billion (excluding VAT) in February 2020.
Restrictions on the issue of electricity to the Guaranteed Buyer by Energoatom:
From March 29, 2020, Energoatom suspended the supply of electric energy to the Guaranteed Buyer in the delivery period 01.03.2020-31.03.2020 for violation of the payment deadlines for electricity supplied in March.
In addition, from April 1, 2020, Energoatom limited the supply of electric energy to the Guaranteed Buyer during the supply period 01.04.2020-30.04.2020 by 40% of the planned amount of electricity supplied to the Guaranteed Buyer in each delivery period, since the level of payment by the Guaranteed buyer of electric energy for March 2020 is only about 40%.
The Guaranteed Buyer released its trading data for February 2020:
The Guaranteed Buyer purchased 5 756 thousand MWh of electricity. This is 1 339 thousand MWh, or 23% less than in January. The reduction in purchased electricity is due to the 25% reduction in electricity sales for GB from the Enegoatom.
Of these, in February, the Guaranteed Buyer purchased 684.9 thousand MWh of renewable electricity under the green tariff. Compared to January, RE supply increased by 181.6 thousand MWh of electricity or 36%.
Energy Community Secretariat
On 10 March, EU4Energy launched a technical assistance project to assist Ukraine in the transposition of Regulation (EU) 347/2013, which aims to facilitate investments in energy infrastructure.
The Board of the National Bank of Ukraine has decided to cut the key policy rate to 10% per annum effective 13 March 2020. The NBU also takes steps to support banks and the financial market.
National Security and Defense Council
Chaired by the President of Ukraine, the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine, at its March 13 meeting adopted a decision “On urgent national security measures in the context of the outbreak of acute COVID-19”, among them: closed borders for foreigners; 24/7 Anti-Crisis Staff and others.