© ICIS HEREN - Countries get three months to finish NIMs
The European Commission will give countries at least three extra months to submit lists showing how many EU allowances they plan to allocate free to industrial plants in 2013-2020, Yvon Slingenberg, head of EU emission trading system (EU ETS) implementation at the Commission, said at the Third Annual European Emissions Markets Conference in Brussels, Belgium, this week.
Most EU countries missed the 30 September deadline to submit these lists, called National Implementation Measures (NIMs).
This could mean that industrials that are long will only be going to the market to sell off surplus allowances in 2012, the final year of phase II.
It will also mean that the final auction volumes remain undecided, as these will have to be adjusted according to the free allocation.
"We have to acknowledge that adoption of the benchmark decision was delayed by three months," Slingenberg said.
The European Council adopted the benchmark in December last year (see EDCM 16 December 2011).
A total of 20 member states missed the deadline to hand in their NIMs last week (see EDCM 5 October 2011). Once they have been submitted, the Commission will have six months to assess the plans.
Asked whether the process is still on track given the heavy delay, Slingenberg said that the purpose of the plans was to provide clarity to operators before phase III of the EU emission trading system (ETS), starting in 2013.
"I do think it should be feasible before then," she said, estimating that the NIM plans would be approved "some time between the summer and the end of 2012".
In the meantime, the Commission has set up a help desk system to help member states to finalise their NIMs.
(THE ICIS HEREN REPORTS - EDCM 6193 / 7 October 2011)

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