Legal briefing

Regulatory framework approved by the CNMC for the remuneration of natural gas distribution activity


The National Commission on Markets and Competition (“CNMC”) has approved the Circular, which establishes the methodology for the remuneration for the regulated activity of natural gas distribution.

The Official State Bulletin(“BOE”) of 3 April 2020 published the CNMC Circular 4/2020, of 31 March, through which the regulatory body definitively approves the new regulatory framework for the remuneration of the natural gas distribution sector (the “Circular”), which will apply to the second regulatory period from 1 January 2021 to 31 December 2026.

The approval of this Circular follows two public consultation procedures and the publication of the relevant reports by the Ministry for the Ecological Transition (the “Ministry”) and by the State Council. The Circular was subject to an initial public consultation on 5 July 2019 and, on the basis of the submissions and reports which were received, to a second public consultation on 3 December 2019. The Ministry issued a report on both versions on 26 July 2019 and on 3 January 2020, respectively, and the Council of State decided on the draft Circular on 27 February 2020. Finally, the Circular was approved “in accordance with the energy policy guidelines of the Ministry for Ecological Transition and the Demographic Challenge, and in compliance with that indicated by the Council of State”, by the Plenary Session of the CNMC on 31 March 2020.

The new Circular is part of the powers assumed by the CNMC following the approval of Royal Decree-Law 1/2019, of 11 January, on urgent measures to adapt the powers of the National Commission on Markets and Competition to the requirements necessitated by European law in relation with Directives 2009/72/CE and 2009/73/CE of the European Parliament and the Council, of 13 July 2009. This legislation deals with common rules for the internal market for electricity and natural gas.

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