The Council of the European Union has voted to adopt the five legislative measures that comprise the third energy liberalisation reform package. The measures put in place the regulatory framework needed to make the opening of the energy market fully effective and to create a single EU gas and electricity market.

The package consists of: i) a Directive establishing common rules for the generation, transmission, distribution and supply of electricity; ii) a Directive establishing common rules for the transmission, distribution, supply and storage of natural gas; and iii) a Regulation on conditions for access to the network for cross-border exchanges in electricity and gas; and a Regulation establishing an Agency for the Co-operation of Energy Regulators.

The measures are expected to be published in the Official Journal in August 2009. Member States will have 18 months to implement the rules.