Lex Delles (DP), the new economy and energy minister, officially took over from Claude Turmes (déi Gréng) on 17 November. Delano’s sister publication Paperjam asked him about his plans and priorities.
Paperjam: What’s the message from the new energy minister?
Lex Delles: I’d like to thank Mr Turmes for his commitment. Over the last few years, he has really changed Luxembourg’s energy policy. He has lived through energy crises, in particular the war in Ukraine--Mr Turmes has made a very strong commitment to the country.
What are your priorities?
Various measures will be taken. As far as applications for authorisations and subsidies are concerned, administrative simplification is my priority. The new government has made a firm commitment to renewable energies, both solar and wind. For the private sector, there are needs in construction contexts: we need to enable people to instal more solar panel systems. Another issue concerns electric charging points, but also--an important element--energy networks.
Are we moving towards more support for the energy transition (for businesses as well as households)?
What’s important is to simplify administrative procedures. To get more solar panels across Luxembourg, we need to introduce the principle of third-party payment for state aid. At the moment, if you [as a business] buy a solar panel, you have to pre-finance it in full. Then you make your application and the state pays you the money. That has to change: the state has to pre-finance support for businesses quickly--it shouldn’t take months.
What is the timeframe for this administrative simplification?
As quickly as possible. I need to look at the issue from different angles. We’re also talking about digitalisation: through guichet.lu, we can find solutions to speed up aid.
This article was originally published in Paperjam. It has been translated and edited for Delano.