On 14 March, the EU launched a new two year Twinning project to assist the National Energy and Utilities Regulatory Commission of Ukraine in creating a competitive, efficient and sustainable market for electricity. Through enforcing proper regulation of competition in the electricity market, the most vulnerable consumers will be better protected.
A key provision of the third EU Electricity Package ensures properly regulated competition on the electricity market, offering the best deal for consumers. Ukraine has committed to adopt the EU Electricity Directive 2009/72/EC in its energy sectoras expressed in the Energy Community Treaty and the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement. Through the newly initiated Twinning project, the EU will help Ukraine move towards a better regulated electricity market. The project will also address the rights of electricity consumers. This includes a public service obligation in electricity supply, the free choice of electricity suppliers and access to information for consumers. The project will draw upon the expertise of the Slovak Republic and other EU member states of the Visegrad Group.
The EU Ambassador to Ukraine Jan Tombiński emphasised: “The reform of the electricity market is among the key steps Ukraine needs to perform. It is not because the country has taken the commitment within the Association Agreement, but for the benefit of the Ukrainian citizens. This reform will be difficult to implement without strong and independent energy regulator, whose role shall be not only to promote competition, but also to protect the consumers. In this context, adoption of the new electricity market law as well as the law on energy regulator will be a necessary start. The EU once more encourages Ukrainian authorities not to delay this important legislation”. Jan Tombiński also added that the EU is continuously supporting Ukraine on its path of complex reforms, and that this project is an important part of the bigger support package.
“This Twinning project will help us find better solutions for the on-going electricity market reforms. The issues of public service obligation and the role of the energy regulator in protecting the rights of electricity consumers is among the priority areas of our cooperation with the colleagues from the Slovak Energy Regulator“, said Dmytro Vovk, the Chairman of the National Energy and Utilities Regulatory Commission.
The Ambassador of the Slovak Republic to Ukraine Juraj Siváček expressed his confidence that the experience of Slovakia as well as of the other countries of the Visegrad Group (Czech Republic, Hungary, and Poland) will be useful for the Ukrainian counterparts to reform its electricity market.
Background information: The EU-funded Twinning programme has been bringing together public bodies of Ukraine and the EU member states to share experience and best practices towards the agreed reforms since 2007.
This Twinning project will be implemented in the National Energy and Utilities Regulatory Commission of Ukraine and will draw upon experience of Slovak Republic as well as experience of other EU MS from the Visegrad Group: Poland, Czech Republic and Hungary. It will be conducted in close coordination with the EU Agency for the Cooperation of Energy Regulators (ACER).
The project budget is €1,6 M and is for a duration of 24 months. The full title of the project is “Support the National Energy and Utilities Regulatory Commission of Ukraine in the Process of Electricity Market Reform” The Member State Partner for the Project is the Regulatory Office for Network Industries of the Republic of Slovakia (RONI).