The Optimist

The Optimist
The Optimist
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Policy

State headquarters of Enel Ceará (formerly Coelce) in Fortaleza (Photo: Disclosure)

Enel Distribuição Ceará accumulates the amount of R$ 19,496,978.26 in fines due to the poor provision of energy services in the state, as reported to O Optimista by the State Consumer Protection Program (Decon), of the State Public Ministry of Ceará, which applied several administrative penalties to the concessionaire.

According to the agency, the amount refers to fines applied between January 2020 and April 1, 2024. According to Decon, of this amount, the “company paid R$ 1,341,687.29”, still remaining the debt of R$ 18,155,291.52.

In June 2023, Decon imposed a fine of R$15 million on Enel due to irregular practices adopted by the company and inefficiency in the provision of public services.

In the last week of March, ARCE – Regulatory Agency of the State of Ceará also fined Enel R$15 million for failing to correct the deficiencies highlighted.

Misconduct

According to information from Decon/CE, “a number of improper conducts carried out by the company were found, such as: unsatisfactory performance verified by the National Electric Energy Agency (Aneel), with a satisfaction score of 2.2 in a range from 1 to 5; 28 assessments registered by the Regulatory Agency of the State of Ceará (Arce) and Aneel, between 2013 and 2021; reduction in the number of low-income consumers, from 814,798 units in 2019 to 773,619 in 2020, a period of increase in the country’s poverty rate; possible non-compliance with the Special Investment Agreement, provided for in the privatization contract; and problems in the capital and in the interior of Ceará (undue billing, power outages, service failures, among others)”.

The main complaints are: “duplicate invoice; request to include the low income category on the invoice; improper billing; failure to meet deadlines; damage caused to the consumer; high consumption; improper power cut; and accumulated consumption”.

According to the MPCE, “the fines paid are converted into resources for the Fund for the Defense of Diffuse Rights of the State of Ceará (FDID), which is linked to the MPCE and provides financial support to social projects that promote improvements in the population’s quality of life. ”.

Otimista contacted Enel Distribuição Ceará, but received no response until the publication of this article.

Oversight

In Ceará, responsibility for inspection lies with the Regulatory Agency of the State of Ceará (Arce), which acts as part of the National Electric Energy Agency (Aneel). She, in turn, is in charge of establishing strategies to monitor and control all energy companies in Brazil.

Annually, Aneel requests several indicators from energy distributors to compile a set of data that serves as a basis for evaluating the quality of the service. Based on this information, a classification is made that identifies the positive and negative aspects.

Based on this data, Aneel contacts regulatory agencies in each region of the country to highlight which areas require inspection.

In the state of Ceará, Arce requests additional information from distributors and then requires them to develop a plan to improve service indicators. This plan lasts for one year and is monitored by the agency. If the company does not reach the established goals, Arce initiates a process to apply penalties proportional to the infraction.

The article is in Portuguese

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