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Dutch natural gas TSO to roll out six new bundled cross-border auctions

11 Feb 2013 18:44:50 | esgm

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The Netherlands competition authority (NMa), has approved bundled cross-border capacity auctions to be extended to six more border points within the country's natural gas grid, Dutch grid operator Gasunie Transport Services (GTS) said on Monday.

Auctions have been successfully conducted at the Oude Statenzjil network point that connects the Netherlands to Germany since 22 May 2012, when GTS initially launched the pilot project (see ESGM 24 May 2012).

Limited amounts of bundled transmission capacity are auctioned off at the border point on a daily basis as part of a pilot to the forthcoming capacity allocation mechanism (CAM).

The network code is due to be implemented in autumn 2013 and become law by 2015, GTS said.

Since its introduction, GTS has said the auctions have helped to strengthen links between the TTF and GASPOOL hubs and has helped to improve liquidity of the gas markets in northwest Europe.

On average, GASPOOL's premium to the TTF on the Day-ahead has declined since the pilot scheme was introduced.

Between 22 May 2012 and 8 February 2013, the average premium was €0.154/MWh, compared with €0.293/MWh during the equivalent period between 2011 and 2012, ICIS data shows.

The NMa said authorising the project's expansion will help to bring the transmission system operator (TSO) in line with EU requirements before the autumn 2013 implementation date.

"Players on the gas market are still dealing with a trading system that is not uniform, meaning that they have to deal with several TSOs, each with their own systems, when purchasing gas capacity," a GTS spokesman said.

"Offering gas capacity jointly as transmission system operators and harmonising the processes will make it much easier for gas buyers to buy capacity."

The other six network points to be launched are: the Oude Statenzijl operated by German TSO GASCADE; the Oude Statenzijl operated by German TSO Open Grid Europe (OGE); Bocholtz TENP also operated by OGE; Bocholtz Vetschau operated by German TSO Thyssengas; and the s-Gravenvoeren and Zelzate points operated by Belgian TSO Fluxys. Kirsty Ayakwah

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