Natural and renewable gases retail market will have shared data hub for exchanging information
From the beginning of 2020, the Natural Gas Market Act will open up the natural gas and renewable gases retail market to competition. At the same time, the retail gas market is taking steps to introduce a centralised information exchange system, a data hub, for natural gas trading. Retailers and distribution network operators will be expected to carry out their retail market processes through the new hub.
The Government submitted its proposal to Parliament on the matter on 19 December 2019. The Government proposal would amend the Natural Gas Market Act and the Act on the Control of the Electricity and Natural Gas Market. The legislative amendments are intended to enter into force as soon as possible after the opening up of the natural gas market to competition at the turn of the year.
The Natural Gas Market Act would lay down provisions on the legal basis for the processing of personal data relating to market processes in natural gas trade, and on the processing of process-related data in the measurement of natural gas deliveries, in the fulfilment of balance responsibility, in the exchange of information on natural gas trade, in other related market processes and in the imbalance settlement.
The proposal includes provisions that would provide the centralised information exchange system and natural gas companies with a legal basis for processing personal data when performing their above-mentioned statutory duties and obligations.
The data hub is operated by the transmission system operator (TSO) responsible for the system (KaasuTSO, which will become Gasgrid Finland Oy after demerger from Gasum on 1 January 2020). Since the system would have a legal monopoly in the provision of its services, the terms and pricing methods of the services would need to be established before deployment. Supervision of the system’s operation would be entrusted to the Energy Authority, which is the national regulatory authority in Finland.
The centralised information exchange solution will deliver long-term economic benefits for natural gas companies and end-users. It will facilitate equal and non-discriminatory treatment of retailers and improve the functioning of the market by increasing competition between retailers. It will support, in particular, the business of active retailers.
The centralised information exchange solution will facilitate the access of new retailers to the market by harmonising and streamlining processes and the exchange of information between market operators. It will also reduce the need for natural gas companies to invest in their own information systems.
Arto Rajala, Ministerial Counsellor, Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment, tel. +358 29 506 4828