Press Release (PR-13-05)

 Press Release: Madrid Forum debates the changing future role of Distribution System Operators

Brussels, 16 October 2013

The 24th meeting of the European Gas Regulatory Forum “Madrid Forum”, 15-16 October, launched a debate about the future role of Distribution System Operators.

Walter Boltz, Vice President of the Council of European Energy Regulators, presented the main changes Europe´s energy networks are facing, underlining that the role of DSOs is changing from passive to much more active network management. To reflect this, CEER formulated a number of relevant questions about the future DSO roles and responsibilities; among others with regard to data protection and management and to transparent and non-discriminatory data exchange between market participants to the benefit of end-consumers.

The issue of the role and responsibilities of DSOs in the future competitive gas market with multiple players and active customers will be further elaborated in the near future. The Forum invited regulators to continue exploring the future role of DSOs in a competitive market framework, especially how regulated and non-regulated activities could be handled to the benefit of customers.

CEER focused already in the past on different DSO related issues, for example in the CEER GGP on electricity and gas retail market design, with a focus on switching and billing (2012) or in the ERGEG GGP on regulatory aspects of smart metering for electricity and gas (2011). In 2014, CEER intends to examine further the developing role of DSOs, including for example on the quality of DSOs services on data management and on demand response.

CEER´s work on storage and LNG was also welcomed by the Madrid Forum. European energy regulators are currently elaborating the first assessment of the storage situation in Europe in order to better understand the factors influencing the use of storage and their effects on security of supply. The Forum acknowledged the need for a more detailed strategic discussion on this issue.


Notes for Editors:

The European Gas Regulatory Forum (Madrid Forum), a bi-annual meeting organised by the European Commission, discusses issues regarding the creation of a true internal gas market. The participants include national regulatory authorities, Member State governments, the European Commission, transmission system operators, gas suppliers and traders, consumers, network users, and gas exchanges. The 24th Madrid Forum took place from 15-16 October 2013. See the regulators’ presentations at the 24th Madrid Forum.

Who is CEER? CEER is the voice of Europe’s national energy regulators. Its members and observers, from 32 European countries, are the independent statutory bodies responsible for energy regulation at national level. Visit

What do energy regulators do? A national regulatory authority’s (NRA’s) job is to help to ensure that the lights stay on, that electricity and gas is supplied reliably and that the prices charged to customers are competitive. Working within their national and EU energy policy framework, NRAs play an important role in overseeing market developments, scrutinising the network companies’ costs and investments, and providing a sound and predictable regulatory policy that encourages efficient investment and a thriving energy sector. Promoting competition in the consumer’s interest is a primary objective of NRAs. Many NRAs also contribute to other policy objectives such as sustainable development goals.

What does CEER do? CEER is a platform for national regulators to cooperate at European level. CEER develops best practice energy regulation, sharing experience and supporting NRAs in their daily work, including through training and workshops. Through CEER, NRAs cooperate and develop common position papers, advice and forward-thinking recommendations to improve the electricity and gas markets for the benefit of consumers and businesses. CEER also fosters cooperation between energy regulators across the globe. Through CEER, Europe’s national regulators speak with one voice globally.

What contribution does CEER make to Europe’s energy goals? CEER actively promotes an investment-friendly and harmonised regulatory environment, and consistent application of existing EU legislation. A key objective of CEER is to facilitate the creation of a single, competitive, efficient and sustainable Internal Energy Market that works in the public interest. CEER’s reports often input directly to work of the European Commission and subsequent EU legislative proposals. CEER has influenced the pace and direction of emerging regulatory issues such a sustainable development, smart grids and market integrity issues.

Who is the Croation Energy Regulatory Authority?
The Croatian Energy Regulatory Agency (Hrvatska Energestska Regulatorma Agencija (HERA) is an autonomous, independent, non-profit legal person with public authority to carry out the regulation of energy activities in Croatia.  HERA has its seat in Zagreb.





Council of European Energy Regulators (CEER)

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