Thursday, September 20, 2007

Competition in the Energy Sector Across the Atlantic

Posted by D. Daniel Sokol

Lost this week in the discussion of Microsoft is that both the US and EU antitrust enforcers have made pushes to introduce competition into the energy sector.  In the EU, there is a draft Directive that calls for increased competition through the separation of production and supply from transmission networks for both electricity and gas. See here.  In the United States, the FTC in its competition advocacy role just submitted comments on wholesale electricity market competition.  According to the FTC summary on its website:

The FTC’s comment proposes a range of ways in which FERC might strengthen the role of competition in electric power markets, including a deeper acknowledgment of the costs and benefits of DR policies and, as DR grows, a greater reliance on DR (rather than wholesale price caps) to prevent the exercise of market power by electricity generators. The comment also encourages FERC to develop incentives for efficiency and improved customer service in organized electric power markets.

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