Energy: EU critical of Albania, Bosnia, Bulgaria and Ukraine

Energy: EU critical of Albania, Bosnia, Bulgaria and Ukraine

Bulgaria, a member state of the EU, as well as Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Ukraine are faced with the requirements of the Third Energy Package.

Bulgaria, according to the European Commission, has yet to adopt and incorporate into its national law the provisions of the Third Energy Package for the Electricity and Gas Market.

Within this framework, the country has two months to do so.

Otherwise, the European Commission will refer the case to the European Court of Justice.

According to the European Commission, Bulgaria, which is also the presiding country of the EU, for the first half of 2018, “misapplied several of the requirements of the Directive regarding the separation of networks from generation and supply activities and the separation of transmission system operators”.

It is noted that without the effective separation of networks from production and supply activities, there is a risk of discrimination in the exploitation of networks.

Taking into account the vertical links between the electricity and gas sectors, the provisions on separation should be applied horizontally in both sectors, where errors are detected by the European Commission here too in the case of Bulgaria.

Effective unbundling of energy production and supply interests from the network is necessary.

This should eliminate any conflict of interests between these activities.

Unbundling should prevent network operators from favouring their own energy production and supply companies as it requires the effective separation of activities of energy transmission from production and supply interests.

The rules on unbundling aim at preventing companies which are involved both in transmission of energy and in production and/or supply of energy from using their privileged position as operators of a transmission network to prevent or obstruct access of their competitors to this network.

Bulgaria, of course, responded to the European Commission’s call.

The public consultation on a plan to amend Energy legislation was completed last week, with the result that the new parliamentary legislation is now pending.

Albania, Bosnia and Ukraine are put in the corner

Ensuring energy supply in Europe is linked to the efficient functioning of the internal electricity market and to the integration of the isolated electricity markets of the Member States.

The EU’s objective was and remains to integrate the Balkans into a single European energy system.

This requires that each market in question comply with European regulations on the liberalisation of the energy market.

Serbia, Montenegro, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, fYROMacedonia, Albania and Kosovo have been part of the so-called ‘Energy Community’ since 2006, with the main goal of creating an integrated European-Trans-Balkan energy market.

However, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Ukraine are faced with the European Union due to the failure to adopt European regulations on the liberalisation of the internal electricity market, with the Energy Community having “initiated” the “dispute settlement” “Against these three countries.

Τhe three Contracting Parties fail to comply with their obligations under the Energy Community Treaty by (completely, partly or incorrectly) not having transposed the unbundling requirements of the Third Energy Package into national legislation and not having taken measures to implement legal and functional unbundling of their national electricity distribution system operators in practice.

The electricity distribution system operators of the three countries still have fully integrated legal and functional governance structures for electricity distribution and supply.

As a result, these three countries continue to keep the internal electricity market “closed”, which harms competition and proves harmful for the consumer, too…/IBNA