Companies quizzed over electricity prices

Nearly 100 companies are to be quizzed over the possible breakage of fair competition rules in the electricity market.

The Swedish Competition Authority is investigating whether those companies which own the nation’s nuclear power plants limited the supply of electricity in order to affect the market price.

In order to see if those companies did you use their positions to control the price of electricity, the Competition Authority sent out a letter to about 100 companies in the electricity industry to get a better sense of the situation.

“The purpose with those questions we are now putting forth to a large number of participants is to identify and investigate suspicions about proper management of the market,” said Claes Norgren, spokesman for the Competition Authority.

Among other questions is how owning a company controlling electricity production can affect its ability to act.

The energy industry faced a crisis in 2000 since the price of electricity was too low. The price covered variable costs for the nuclear power stations, but did not cover the costs of maintenance and investment, and was not enough to make the owners happy.

During the year, the nuclear power industry lowered production, leading to a lesser supply of electricity increasing prices.

Responses to the letters are due to be returned before the August 7.