Final Word from Wednesday, June 3, 2009

The Economist wrote in May that the German and Anglo-Saxon ways of doing things are out and that the French model is now de rigueur. The French think more long-term and provide greater social protection. CEO Pierre Gadonneix of EDF boasts of how much his utility is loved by the French people. The state, which owns 85% of EDF, achieves this in part by regulating residential electricity rates. This is allowed under an EU directive, and the subsidies for households and SMEs aren't being challenged by the EU in its ongoing assessment of French energy policy. The Czech electricity market is often set against Germany's, but comparing it to France's makes more sense. Like EDF, ČEZ is a monopoly power generator that is majority-owned by the state. The difference is that EDF is more socially conscious. As elections approach, watch for more Czech politicians to start singing La Marseillaise.[Czech Republic small and midsize enterprises European Union Électricité de France Le modèle français]

Glossary of difficult words

de rigueur - required by etiquette or current fashion; fashionable;

EDF - Électricité de France, the main electricity-generation and distribution company in France;

utility - a pubic service provider;

SMEs - small and midsize enterprises; in this case, those with fewer than 50 employees and annual revenue or balance sheet below EUR 10m;

La Marseillaise - the French national anthem.


Tel: 420 224 221 580

Published by

E.S. Best s.r.o.
Ovenecká 78/33
170 00 Prague 7
Czech Republic



FS Final Word