On 10 May 2017, The Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority ("FCCA") announced that it had closed its investigation into the recommendation issued by Finnish Energy (Energiateollisuus ry), an organization representing companies that produce, acquire, transmit and sell electricity, district heating and cooling, and offer other related services.
The FCCA reported on 15 April 2016 that it had conducted an investigation at the premises of Finnish Energy in relation to a recommendation issued by it, concerning the harmonization of the time-based measurement of electricity transmission. The Network Council of Finnish Energy recommended in October 2015 that all electricity transmission should apply the same time-based measurements in their transmission tariffs. The FCCA had concerns that competition had been restricted by companies agreeing to harmonize the time-based measurement of electricity sales and transmissions in order to comply with the recommendation given by Finnish Energy.
The FCCA investigated the effects the recommendation had on two-rate time-of-day electrical energy products sold to retail customers. Electricity suppliers offer two-rate time-of-day night and season electricity products, meaning that energy consumed during daytime or winter is more expensive than electricity consumed at other times. As a result of the recommendation, the time-based electricity prices of the more expensive daytime hours increased considerably compared to the less expensive night-time prices.
The FCCA found no evidence to suggest that the purpose of the recommendation was to harmonize the behavior of competing electricity transmission companies or to restrict competition in the retail sale of electricity. The prices of two-rate time-of-day electrical energy products have not increased as a result of the recommendation because the electricity suppliers, who increased the number of the more expensive daytime energy hours, also decreased the sale prices of two-rate time-of-day electrical energy products to compensate for the increase.
The FCCA further emphasized that the harmonization of time-based measurements, following the recommendation, may enhance competition in the electrical energy market, as the electricity suppliers’ two-rate time-of-day electrical energy products are compatible with the transmission tariffs of all electricity transmission companies.