Evaluation: Energy Authority performs well but should take a more active approach to energy transition
In the new decade, the Energy Authority should be a visionary national authority in the energy sector that carries out the implementation and monitoring tasks assigned to it objectively, but also actively offers its expertise to support the reform of energy and climate policy.
This proposal is included in an evaluation of the agency, which was published on 22 December 2021. This is the first time the operations of the Energy Authority were assessed. Frisky & Anjoy Oy carried out the external assessment.
According to the assessment, the Energy Authority has succeeded quite well in its operations. The agency has a great deal of competence and expertise, and its unbiased activities enjoy a high level of trust among companies that it supervises or licences.
Based on the assessment, however, the agency appears passive and reactive to some extent. This is partly due to a lack of understanding of the agency’s competence in matters such as electricity transfer pricing. On the other hand, it also reflects the need to develop the agency’s communications and operating culture. The energy transition will require proactive guidance and wise regulation.
“The Energy Authority plays an important and recognised role as an independent supervisory authority that promotes climate measures. Its solid expertise should be utilised both in policy preparation and in public debate. This comprehensive assessment provides an excellent starting point to develop the agency,” says Riku Huttunen, Director General of the Energy Department of the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment.
The Energy Authority is one of the key players in the implementation of climate and energy policy. The agency’s task is to monitor and promote the energy market, reduction of emissions, energy efficiency and the use of renewable energy.
The assessment covered the organisation and management of the Energy Authority’s operations, its relationship with society, and performance guidance and other cooperation between it and the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment.
The report contains eight recommendations. According to them, the Energy Authority should be developed into a modern agency of energy experts based on its current strengths. The agency could increase dialogue, experiments and joint development with organisations, companies and other authorities in the sector. In addition, the agency’s communications should be strengthened to better correspond with activities of an agile expert agency. The Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment should strive to direct the agency’s activities in a manner that would enable its strategic renewal.
Carrying out the tasks simultaneously would be possible if, for example, the agency’s operative strategy and organisational model were developed towards a direction in which supervisory and promotion tasks were functionally separated to create a modern expert agency based on supplementary capabilities.
The Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment and the Energy Authority will consider how the assessment could be used to develop the agency’s operations and performance guidance. The results of this work will be reflected in the next performance agreement between the Ministry and the agency, which will be concluded by autumn 2022.
Jaana Avolahti, Ministerial Adviser, Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment, tel. +358 29 506 4836 and email: firstname.familyname(at)gov.fi
Riku Huttunen, Director General, Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment, tel. +358 50 431 6518 and email: firstname.familyname(at)gov.fi
Petri Uusikylä, Chief Executive Officer, Frisky & Anjoy, tel. +358 40 577 7516 and email: firstname.familyname(at)frisky.fi