Last week India’s Central Electricity Regulatory Commission (CERC) made two big announcements. Both have moved shares – and both mark a step change in the country’s power sector.

First, the commission published tariff regulations for the next five years – an announcement which helping push shares in NTPC, the power producer, down 11.4 per cent on Monday and another 0.9 per cent on Tuesday to close at Rs115.85. Read more

By Nicholas Watson of bne

A new Czech government is in the final stages of being formed, but its make-up will probably mean further delays at the very least for the state utility CEZ’s costly nuclear tender.

Czech President Milos Zeman is expected on November 21 to give a mandate to Bohuslav Sobotka, head of the Czech Social Democratic Party (CSSD), which won the inconclusive parliamentary election in October, to form the next government. Sobotka has already started talks with the big winner of the election, the new ANO 2011 party founded by Slovak-born billionaire Andrej Babis, and the centrist Christian Democrats (KDU-CSL). Read more

What can Eskom do about it’s funding problems? The South African power utility is looking to spend a whopping $50bn revamping old plants and building new generators including Kusile and Medupi, set to be the world’s third- and fourth-largest coal-fired stations. But the company’s hopes of 16 per cent price increases over the next few years were dashed by the national regulator, which allowed it only 8 per cent.

So Eskom is looking at ‘equity-like debt’ instead. Will that work? Read more

By Nicholas Watson of bne

Areva, the French nuclear company, has lost its latest appeal against its controversial ejection from the Czech Republic’s giant nuclear tender. The company has vowed to continue legal proceedings in the administrative court of Brno. Read more

By Tim Gosling of bne

CEZ, the Czech state-controlled utility, is to delay expansion of its Temelin nuclear power plant by a year, as the political crisis gripping the country prevents it from securing a final agreement to start the project.

Following the collapse of the centre-right government in June, the future of the estimated €8bn to €12bn project has been caught up in uncertainty over the interim administration installed by President Milos Zeman this month. Read more

This was downtown Buenos Aires in the rush hour on Wednesday night. Ouch.

A gigantic power cut crippled the centre of the capital, causing three hours of chaos and misery for 3m people, some of whom were trapped in the metro or ended up having to walk miles home through gridlocked streets choked by failed traffic lights. It could get worse on Thursday. Read more

By Ben Aris of bne

Its back to the drawing board for Russia’s utilities reform.

The Russian government admitted at the end of last week reforms designed to set the regulated tariff rates have been driving badly needed investors away from the sector. Read more

Evo Morales has gone and done it again. The president of Bolivia has nationalised a local unit of Spain’s Red Electrica, “in honour of all Bolivian people.”

This is not the first time. Two years ago Morales nationalised four electric companies – two of which were foreign – at the “thunderous request of the people”.

In fact, one might argue May Day nationalisations are becoming something of a habit in Bolivia. Read more