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IMF Report: No increase in electricity and gas Prices in Serbia, but changes in calculation methods expected

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The IMF report for Serbia does not anticipate a rise in electricity and gas prices in May 2024. Instead, it envisions the introduction of a new calculation method for both electricity and gas consumption, according to economist Mihailo Gajić in an interview with the N1 portal.

On Friday, Minister of Mining and Energy Dubravka Đedović confirmed that the price of electricity and gas in Serbia will remain unchanged in May. She refuted claims that the postponement of the price increase was politically motivated and stated that discussions with the IMF in November 2023 concluded there was no need for a price hike in May of the following year.

The IMF report, published on December 21, 2023, contradicts the earlier prediction of increased electricity and gas prices in May 2024 from the report exactly a year prior. The previous forecast outlined three increments: on May 1, 2023, November 1, 2023, and May 1, 2024, with electricity rising by 8% and gas by 10%.

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Economist Mihailo Gajić confirmed to the N1 portal that the IMF report doesn’t foresee a price hike in May. However, he highlighted that it introduces new methods for calculating consumed electricity and gas.

Gajić explained that the IMF anticipates a change in the calculation of electricity for the unregulated market, affecting businesses. This doesn’t necessarily mean increased costs globally, as some consumers might experience cheaper rates, while others may face higher charges.

Regarding gas, Gajić noted potential changes in May, primarily concerning the method of calculating gas usage. Again, this shift primarily impacts large consumers, specifically businesses, rather than households.

The IMF report also suggests the expected separation of Srbijagas into two companies by the end of the year. Similar to Elektroprivreda, where Elektrodistribucija and Elektromrež coexist, Srbijagas might undergo a similar split—one company focusing on gas import and the other on gas distribution. Gajić suggested that the IMF is likely to wait for this procedure’s completion before announcing further steps regarding gas prices.

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