Energy and Utilities

Preliminary draft law for the re-establishment of the National Energy Commission published

Published on 1st Mar 2024

The draft law also provides for the creation of the Fund for the Economic-Financial Management of the Settlements of the Electricity and Gas Sectors

On 21 February, the MITECO public hearing of the preliminary draft law to re-establish the National Energy Commission and create the Fund for the Economic-Financial Management of Electricity and Gas Sector Settlements. With this publication, the legislative process to re-establish the  National Energy Commission (CNE) has begun. This measure is a response to climate urgency, the ecological transition, the need to reconfigure energy markets and the need for specialised supervision in a particularly complex sector such as the energy sector. The deadline for making allegations to the preliminary draft is 4 March 2024. 

The CNE operated from 1995 until 2013, when the National Commission for Markets and Competition (CNMC) was created, into which it was subsumed along with the rest of the sectorial regulators. The reintegration of the CNE is envisaged as an independent entity with expanded functions, including the decarbonisation of the Spanish economy, for which an adaptation of energy regulation is foreseen to integrate new energy solutions, such as hydrogen and other renewable gases, as well as to address challenges in relation to consumer protection and innovation in business models.

In accordance with the provisions of the preliminary draft law, the new CNE, with its own legal personality, will have supervisory and control powers over the electricity, liquid hydrocarbons, natural gas, green hydrogen and other renewable gas markets. It will also have inspection, sanctioning, arbitration and complaints handling functions for agents and consumers. The entity will also act as a consultative body in its sphere of action and will participate in the drafting of regulations that directly affect its competencies.

The CNE will be attached to the Ministry for Ecological Transition and the Demographic Challenge and will have a Board of Directors and three general directorates in charge of carrying out its functions: Electricity, Hydrocarbons and New Fuels and Inspection. The Government will approve the Organic Statute of the CNE to define its internal structure and specific functions. The preliminary draft law also envisages the creation of the Fund for the Economic and Financial Management of Electricity and Gas Sector Settlements (FGLSEG) to manage the revenues and payments corresponding to the settlements of tolls, charges, fees and regulated remuneration in these sectors, as well as the budget transfers earmarked for them.

In summary, the re-establishment of the CNE aims to strengthen energy governance in Spain, adapting to the challenges of climate change and the transition to a decarbonised economy in a context of transformation of the energy sector towards sustainability.

Should you wish to find out more about the proposed regulation establishing a new regulator for the energy sector or to participate in the comment process, please do not hesitate to contact one of our experts listed below or your usual contact at Osborne Clarke.


* This article is current as of the date of its publication and does not necessarily reflect the present state of the law or relevant regulation.

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