In spite of the overall economic climate, the renewable energy sector shows promising signs of improvement. Long-awaited national guidelines on authorisation for renewable energy plants, as well as new classifications for photovoltaic plants, will be crucial to the future development of the sector.
The Ministry of Economic Development and the Ministry of Environment have prepared a draft decree to amend the system of incentives for photovoltaic solar power generation. The main concern for entities working in the sector is the overall reduction in incentive tariffs. However, the framework for investment is still advantageous.
In addition to the general liberalization of electricity generation in Italy over the past decade, further liberalizing incentives apply to generation from renewable sources. A streamlined application system applies for authorization to establish and manage new renewable energy plants.
From January 1 2003 all gas producers, importers, distributors and wholesalers will be free to execute supply agreements with end consumers, as long as they meet certain specified criteria. The step is intended to further the liberalization of Italy's gas market.
Until recently, the construction of new power plants and the repowering of existing plants were subject to a lengthy and complicated bureaucratic process. However, a new law enables power projects to progress swiftly through a simplified authorization process.