The Electricity and Natural Gas Law 123/2012 has been recently amended with new clarifications and obligations added for both the electricity and gas sectors.

The main amendments address:

Electricity:

  • Distribution operators are under the obligation to finance the national grid connection works, irrespective of the project profitability; projects can be co-financed from local or state budgets or with contribution from physical or legal persons requiring the connection.
  • Prohibition of electricity suppliers from unilaterally terminating contracts with final clients.
  • Creation of an implementation calendar for the smart metering systems.

Natural Gas:

  • Introduction of the concept of a “natural gas trader” as a physical or legal person purchasing and selling natural gas exclusively on the wholesale gas market. Previously, the law provided trading only in the electricity sector. This is a long awaited amendment and it is expected to be followed by enactment of secondary legislation detailing the licensing conditions.
  • Starting with 1 January 2019, participants to the natural gas market who contract for the wholesale sale of gas, are under the obligation to conclude gas sales on the wholesale centralised market for at least 50% of the gas contracted and delivered within the respective calendar year. Except for gas suppliers with access to a sole gas source, wholesale gas buyers are under the obligation to buy at least 40% of the gas contracted on the wholesale centralised market within the respective calendar year.
  • Starting with 1 January 2019, gas producers who contract for the sale of gas, are under the obligation to conclude gas sales on the wholesale centralised market for at least 50% of the gas contracted and delivered within the respective calendar year. For the remaining 2018, there are no amendments to the existing trading quotas of 30% for producers and suppliers (when selling gas) , respectively 20% for suppliers when buying gas
  • The quotas are subject to annual increases through ANRE decision opposed to current amendments which may be decided by the Government
  • The virtual transaction point (VTP) has been introduced and defined as an unique NTS virtual point where gas title transfers are allowed between the participants in the natural gas market
  • The public gas distribution service shall be contracted by local authorities
  • The Romanian Transmission Network Code for natural gas must be amended within six months to reflect the new provisions