Energy regulators MEDREG have facilitated the organisation of a technical study visit between the newly established Egyptian gas regulatory authority (GasReg), and Portugal’s regulatory authority (ERSE), to address regulatory experiences regarding liberalisation of gas markets.
Co-funded by the European Union, MEDREG is the Association of Mediterranean Energy Regulators, which brings together 25 regulators from 21 countries, spanning the European Union (EU), the Balkans and North Africa.
The study visit took place as part of MEDREG’s support to national reforms in the Southern Mediterranean and was financed by the European Union.
Composed of the Executive Chairman, Karem Mahmoud, and three colleagues, the GasReg delegation learnt from ERSE experts about Portugal’s experience in opening up its gas markets, focusing on the handling of legacy contracts, the opportunities to align market liberalisation with price reform, the eligibility of consumers and the practical implementation of the liberalisation process, MEDREG said.
MEDREG President and ERSE Board Member Alexandre Santos noted that following the two previous technical workshops organised by MEDREG for GasReg, this study visit is an invaluable occasion to exchange experiences in person. “The gas sector is relatively young in Portugal, so we are pleased to share our recent know-how with GasReg as a way to support the liberalisation of its gas market,” Santos said.
“This sharing of experience has made us more equipped to accompany and sustain the transition towards an open and efficient gas market. Thanks to the rich exchange we had with ERSE today, we know the pitfalls to avoid and some key principles to follow for a smooth liberalisation of our gas market in Egypt,” said Mahmoud.
Established two months ago, the independent regulator GasReg has been entrusted with the approval of a new gas facilities code, a tariff calculation methodology, rules on Third Party Access and follow-up and monitoring of gas actors’ licenses. As a new entity, GasReg also faces many challenges related to the introduction of cost-reflective tariffs, the monitoring of the quality of services and the establishment of the regulator’s credibility.
MEDREG will continue to support GasReg and its Southern shore members in reforming their energy market with the aim of attracting investments, protecting and offering more choice to consumers as well as facilitating the integration of renewable energy.
MEDREG is now working on supporting another study visit for the Israeli gas regulator (NGA), which is currently opening its household gas market and would like to examine the procedures followed by other regulators who have faced the same transition. The Spanish and Turkish regulators, CNMC and EMRA, have offered to host a technical discussion with Israeli colleagues in May 2018.