ACER finds delays and varying performance in the implementation of the Gas Balancing Network Code

The Agency publishes today its third Report on the implementation of the Balancing Network Code. Rules on gas balancing aim to facilitate gas trading across EU balancing zones and to contribute to the development of short-term markets. In an appropriate trading environment, network users are able to manage their risks and opportunities related to gas imbalances. 

The Agency invites interested parties to use the Agency’s Balancing Analytical Framework to carry out their own analysis and to offer feedback to the Agency in order to improve the Framework.

Main findings:
  • Implementation delays: some Member States need to take the necessary steps to meet the April 2019 deadline for full implementation.
  • Transmission System Operators:  TSOs play an important role in the development of short-term markets. TSOs’ balancing activity needs to stimulate the short-term market, building on the use of short-term standardised products wherever possible.
  • Performance: the discrepancies in the indicators across regimes hint at differences in performance of the various balancing regimes. The indicators can be used to detect areas for regime improvement.
  • Data: The Agency looks forward to getting complete and validated data for all the indicators of the Framework, as a precondition for its next analysis.
Main recommendations:
  • National Regulatory Authorities (NRAs), TSOs and market players are encouraged to follow up on the evolution of the balancing systems design.
  • The evolution of the neutrality cash-flows and gas accounting should be followed up by NRAs and TSOs.
  • Where significant use of other tools beyond short-term standardised products takes place, their need, appropriateness, transparent use deserves constant regulatory scrutiny.
  • Tolerance removals shall take place step-by-step and Balancing Platforms shall be carefully assessed and preferably ended.
You can access the Report here.
Previous Reports on the implementation of the Code
  1. Second ACER Report on the implementation of the Balancing Network Code – 16 November 2017 (Volume I​ and Volume II)
  2. ACER Report on the implementation of the Balancing Network Code ​– 7 November 2016 (Technical Annexes)
The Agency’s third Report analyses the functioning of the balancing systems of seven balancing zones during Gas Year 2016/17. The analysis covers five additional balancing zones:
  • GazSystem (Poland high-calorific zone), 
  • SnamReteGas (Italy),
  • Net4Gas (Czech Republic),
  • FGSZ (Hungary), 
  • Market Area East (Austria) 
and presents findings and recommendations. The Report repeats the analysis for two previously reviewed zones, as benchmark (National Grid Group (UK-GB) and Energinet.dk (Denmark)).