Eleven EU Companies Call for Renewables Investment Protection

Eleven companies doing business in the renewable energy sector have called for investment protection for renewable energy projects in Europe. 

Acciona, Allianz, Commerzbank, EDPR, Enel Green Power Gamesa, ERG, E.ON, HgCapital, Rabobank and RES Group said that, while the industry acknowledges the need to adjust regulatory frameworks over time to respond to declining technology costs and market developments, retroactive changes erode investor confidence in the EU energy infrastructure sector.

“Accordingly, investors in the space have no choice but to expect long-term regulatory stability for renewable energy plants. Thus any regulatory change should be concerted, non-retroactive, non-discriminatory, and avoid any legal gaps that would undermine investor certainty,” the companies said in their jointly signed statement.

Germany and the UK accounted for 67% of total EU renewable energy investment, both in new and existing projects, from January 2011 to June 2016, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance. “It is revealing that the two countries that have expressly rejected retroactive changes to existing assets have attracted the vast majority of investments,” the signatories said.

They have called on the EU to take the following steps to promote investment in EU infrastructure and help ensure a sustainable flow of competitive, long-term capital:

  • Introduce a permanent dispute settlement mechanism independent of national courts and enshrined in the EU Treaty with protection against expropriation, discrimination and breach of legitimate expectations
  • Integrate a grandfathering principle in the post 2020 Renewable Energy Directive to prevent retroactive changes and guarantee the economic viability of existing assets