Karanović & Nikolić At The Competition Law In The Energy Sectors Conference

SEEPEX – Serbian Experience

Miloš Vučković, Senior Partner at Karanović & Nikolić, held a presentation on the 4th of December at the Competition Law in the Energy Sectors conference in Vienna. The event was organized by the Energy Community and it featured representatives from various European countries, as well as legal experts and professionals from the energy sector. The main topics at the conference were the current and future trends in the energy industry and their relation with the field of competition law.

Mr Vučković’s presentation was in the fourth part of the conference “Market coupling, market splitting, power exchanges and the role of competition law”. Titled “SEEPEX – Serbian Experience”, the presentation gave an overview of the developments and trends in the Balkan energy sector. In particular focus was the establishment of SEEPEX – the only regional power exchange in South East Europe.

Based on the WB6 Electricity Monitoring Report, issued by the Energy Community in the autumn of 2017, Serbia is at the moment ahead of its neighbouring countries, having the first power exchange in the Western Balkans region (i.e. WB6 region) as of the beginning of 2016. At the moment trading on SEEPEX is voluntary and no regulatory measures promoting liquidity have been taken.

The standard products traded at SEEPEX are single orders and block orders at the day-ahead spot market.  As of March 2017, SEEPEX introduced a flexible block order as a new product with the aim of increasing liquidity. Further measures to increase liquidity should be implemented, such as the purchase of network losses, the selling of electricity from renewable sources, further deregulation of retail prices and abandoning the licensing regime. At the moment, the introduction of an intra-day market does not seem realistic.

There was no progress made towards the coupling of the Serbian day-ahead market with the markets of Hungary, Czech Republic, Slovakia and Romania (known as 4MMC), for which SEEPEX expressed interest in a letter of intent sent to 4 MMC, together with the Serbian regulatory authority and the transmission system operator. Activities concerning the coupling with 4MMC, as well as with Montenegro, Albania and Italy are part of the implementation of a road map for the regional day-ahead market integration in Western Balkans.

Other panels at the conference included: “The Gazprom Case – A Controversy”, dealing with the European Competition Commission’s case against Gazprom, a large Russian gas company; and, “Competition Law as a Sword and Shield in Arbitration”, discussing the extent in which competition law is helpful or in the energy sector from an arbitration perspective.