Dissertation: Möglichkeiten und Grenzen der Anreizregulierung in Deutschland

Möglichkeiten und Grenzen der Anreizregulierung in Deutschland

Eine Untersuchung am Beispiel der Stromnetze

Wirtschaftspolitik in Forschung und Praxis, volume 66

Hamburg , 380 pages

ISBN 978-3-8300-7317-8 (print)

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Electric power is an essential resource for modern economies. Thus, this is also true for the required electronic grids. The aimed “Energiewende” (Energy revolution towards sustainable energy production) in Germany will lead to an even increasing importance of electronic grids, as the already installed network is not sufficient for a decentralized energy supply. However, the transportation of electric power is a natural monopoly. Hence, one operator can operate the electronic grid to less costs then a combination of operators. This is attributable to high initial investment costs, which are required to install an electronic grid. As these costs are not reversible, the operator can achieve monopoly rents.

This behavior leads to an inefficient level of welfare. In order to avoid this attitude, the operation of electronic grids is regulated. In Germany the “Bundesnetzagentur” (Federal Network Agency) is responsible for the regulation of electronic utilities. Since January 1st, 2009 the regulation is performed with an incentive regulation. This regulatory approach aims to avoid monopoly rents and shall provide incentives for cost-effective operations.

The book assesses, to what extent these objectives are reached. The investigation of the reliability of the “Anreizregulierung” (Incentive regulation) is based on the financial net book value criteria. In addition, also accounting issues are considered. However, the investigation does not solely consider the whole investment period. Also the prices of each single period are reviewed.

After an overview about the motivation of regulation and ist alternatives, the composer explains the common regulatory approaches. Subsequently, the “Anreizregulierung” in Germany is explained in detail. The RRC rule of Rogerson is used to review the periodical appropriateness of utilization fees. Hence, Rogerson's approch is also considered and expanded for an incentive mechanism. This investigation shows that the RRC rule calculating different depreciation and cost of capital compared to the German “Anreizregulierung”. This is valid for old plants (purchased before January 1st, 2006) as well as for new plants. Furthermore, the return of land, intangible assets and the so called “Doppelte Eigenkapitallimitierung” (doubled equity limitation) are analyzed. Investigations of the incentive mechanism and the adjustment of revenues, especially due to new investments, complete the book.

The study considers mainly economic aspects. As the subject is also influenced by legal arguments, such aspects are considered as well, but less extensive.

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