Chubais rejects Savisaar's idea

  • 2005-10-12
  • From wire reports
TALLINN - Anatoli Chubais, CEO of Russia's electricity monopoly, UES Russia, has rejected an Estonia proposal allowing Eesti Energia to rent part of the hydroelectric power station situated on the Narva River on the Estonian-Russian border.

According to reports, the Economy Ministry received a letter to this effect last week.

Economy Minister Edgar Savisaar had been hoping to solve several problems with the proposal - namely, how to get cheap electricity for Eesti Energia, the state-owned power company, and how to continue refining Russian oil-shale, which the company stopped doing in the spring.

In his letter, Chubais reportedly referred to Russian laws regulating the wholesale energy market. Apparently the output of rented power stations has to be sold on the Russian domestic market only, according to the laws.

Heido Vitsur, adviser to the economy minister, said Estonia stood to benefit from cooperating with Russia's energy system.

"Maybe it's not advantageous for us now to buy oil shale from Russia, but after two years maybe it will be," Vitsur said.

Narva Elektrijaamad in April this year stopped providing the electricity-generating service to Russia using Russian-mined oil shale, saying the other side had failed to abide by its commitments arising from the agreement. That led to a series of talks aimed at finding a compromise.