Publications / Articles
Gripped by loopsPublished: 2 of June, 2016

The simmering discontent of countries suffering from unintended physical flows through their electricity interconnections and within their internal network reached a tipping point for Poland in December 2014. At this time, Polish energy regulator (URE) made a formal request for ACER to form an opinion on the compliance of the current methods of allocation of cross-border transmission capacities in the CEE region with the provisions of Regulation 714/2009. ACER issued its legally non-binding opinion on this matter in September 2015, requesting the regulators and TSOs in the CEE region to come up with a timeframe for implementing coordinated capacity allocation at the German-Austrian border. ACER supports URE’s claim that the absence of cross-border capacity allocation for commercial transactions at the DE-AT border results in significant power flows across the transmission system of neighbouring countries, notably the German- Polish, German-Czech and Czech-Austrian border resulting in structural congestion that threatens network security and crowds out commercial trade. As a consequence, the DE-AT border must be defined as structurally congested and – following the provisions of the Regulation – needs to be the subject of a transparent and non-discriminatory capacity allocation procedure, i.e. the splitting of the German-Austrian single price zone. The Austrian regulator, E-Control, challenged ACER over the proposed market-splitting of the German-Austrian single electricity price zone before the European Court of Justice and filed an appeal with ACER’s Board of Appeal. However, only appeals directed against individual ACER decisions or measures having legal effects can be admitted by the Board of Appeal. Since ACER’s request for the implementation of a capacity allocation procedure did not qualify for a binding measure with direct legal effects, ACER has dismissed the appeal as inadmissible.