Gas market / Legislation, regulation and recommendations

Legislation and regulation

Natural Gas Market Act

The purpose of the Natural Gas Market Act is to ensure the conditions for a national and regional natural gas market that functions efficiently, securely and environmentally sustainably as well as for the European Union’s internal natural gas market. The aim is ensure a good security of supply of natural gas and access to natural gas that is competitively priced and sufficiently high in quality. The primary means for creating a functioning natural gas market are safeguarding healthy and effective economic competition in the supply and storage of natural gas, and maintaining reasonable and fair service principles in the functioning of natural gas networks and liquefied natural gas (LNG) processing facilities. The tasks of enterprises in the natural gas sector include ensuring the provision of services relating to their customers’ natural gas procurement and promoting in their own and their customers’ activities the efficient and economical use of natural gas. The Act applies to the import, export, transmission, distribution, delivery and storage of natural gas and LNG. The Act covers gas from renewable energy sources and other gas that can be technically and safely injected into the natural gas network and transmitted and distributed in the natural gas network.

Government Decree on the Settlement and Measurement of Natural Gas Delivery

The Decree lays down further provisions on organising balance responsibility between gas market participants, on notifications concerning natural gas deliveries and switching natural gas suppliers, on balance settlement and on measurement of natural gas deliveries. The Decree also applies to gases from renewable energy sources and other gases injected into the natural gas system.

Gas market terms and conditions

As the regulatory authority, the Energy Authority confirms the terms and conditions for the gas market under the Act on the Regulation of the Electricity and Gas Markets (590/2013). The market rules are subordinate to the gas market terms and conditions and, under the Market Regulation Act, the Energy Authority may address any violations of the terms and conditions. In terms of content, the market rules are larger entities from which components under the Market Regulation Act have been formulated into separate documents containing terms and conditions.

From the beginning of 2020 Finland started applying EU gas market legislation in full, as this is when the derogation procedure applied by Finland for a long time due to its isolated market ended.

The Natural Gas Directive establishes common rules for the European Union concerning the transmission, distribution, supply and storage of natural gas. It lays down the rules relating to organisation and functioning of the natural gas sector, access to the market, and the criteria and procedures applicable to the granting of authorisations for transmission, distribution, supply and storage of natural gas and the operation of systems.

Network codes

Created to promote the interconnection of energy markets and increase trade, the EU-wide network codes aim to complete a fully functioning and interconnected internal energy market to maintain security of supply, increase competitiveness and ensure that all consumers can purchase energy at the reasonable prices.

Market rules and recommendations

The market rules determine the operating principles of the gas market that market participants follow when operating in the wholesale and retail markets. The market rules have been drawn up together with market participants and authorities, and they will be updated and developed as necessary.

The gas market guidelines and recommendations supplement the Finnish gas market rules.

The Gas Market Code and Information Exchange Guidelines have been drawn up for shippers, traders, transmission network end users, biogas injecting parties, distribution system operators and retailers to further specify recommendations related to procedures and requirements and instructions relating to the exchange of information.

The Gasgrid Portal is a wholesale market interface (for capacity booking, nominations, delivery relationships) and Datahub is a centralized information exchange service for the retail market.

The Gas Measurement Recommendations have been drawn up for the transmission system operator, distribution system operators and those responsible for measurements but also for parties relating to the processing, communication and receipt of measurement data. The recommendations cover measurements in the transmission as well as in the distribution network.

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