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DTe Publishes Law Enforcement Plan

The Office for Energy Regulation (DTe) today published its enforcement plan which sets out to the procedure which the regulator will follow if an undertaking infringes the Electricity Act of 1998 and/or the Gas Act. In this plan, DTe indicates how it will carry out its regulatory duties, what statutory enforcement instruments it has at its disposal and what steps it will take in utilising these instruments. In addition, the priorities with regard to regulation in the years 2003 en 2004 are discussed.

In addition to its duties with regard to implementation of legislation and activities such as drawing up technical codes and guidelines for gas, DTe also has supervisory duties, pursuant to the Electricity Act of 1998 and the Gas Act. On the basis of these duties, DTe can take action against companies which infringe the energy Acts, for instance if they do not adhere to the agreed switching procedure. By means of a binding instruction (a so-called 'red' card) or an order subject to a penalty, DTe can compel these companies to cease their infringement. For each (possible) infringement, DTe will establish what method is most effective and efficient, such as a serious discussion, a warning letter or publication on DTe's website.

The point of departure for the regulator is that the market players are themselves responsible for proper compliance with the Acts. DTe will determine critically the extent to which the statutory duties which market players are required to fulfil are also sufficiently clear. In the coming year, DTe will pay more attention to transparency and the provision of information with regard to rules.