Montenegro: Energy regulator prescribes rules, who and how can offer service of the electricity supply

5. February 2015. / SEE Energy News

The opening of the electricity market in Montenegro from January 1st also enabled the right to households to choose electricity supplier, or to choose the most preferred bid for supplying

Regulatory Energy Agency (RAE) published the basic information for potential electricity suppliers, as the market in Montenegro has been open from January 1st.

From RAE said that, in accordance with the law, electricity supplier can perform under the license issued by the regulator.

“The conditions for issuing licenses are regulated by law and the Rules on the manner and conditions for the issuance, amendment and revocation of licenses for energy activities. Under these documents is determined that the license for the supply can be issued to the company registered for performing the activity for which submit the request for the license and which has employed appropriate professional qualification”, explained from RAE.

Energy subject must have the funds necessary for carrying out energy activities or submit evidence that they can provide.

“The supplier may supply with electricity any final customer connected to the transmission or distribution system only if the transmission or distribution system operator, on which are connected the plants of the end customer, determines alone or in the decision of a competent inspector that the plant is eligible for the safe supply”.

The license, as stated, is issued for a period of 15 years. The license holder, if it wishes to continue with activities performance, may submit request for the extension within 60 days before the expiration date.

“RAE shall exercise supervision and control of energy subjects in respect of the recognition and application of license conditions. If it finds that the holder acts contrary to these conditions or fails to fulfill them, RAE will carry out the procedure for temporary license revocation”, said the representatives of the regulator.

The license holder is obliged to pay annual fee during using it. Payment shall be made quarterly in four equal installments.

Licensed activity, supplier does in accordance with the rules of competition, security and quality of supply and customer protection.

The opening of the electricity market in Montenegro from January 1st also enabled the right to households to choose electricity supplier, or to choose the most preferred bid for supplying. The electricity market in Montenegro has been opened since January 1st, 2009th, to all buyers, except for households, thus they have become qualified and eligible to choose their supplier.

From RAE explained that the main or major energy part for supply customers, supplier purchased on the market from manufacturers, retailers or other suppliers.

“In addition to this energy, for customers supply the supplier is obliged also to provide related, obliged share of electricity produced from renewable energy sources (RES) in the facilities of privileged producers”, added the representatives of RAE.

Obliged share of energy from RES, supplier purchases from the market operator (COTE), at the prices set in the tariff system, which brings the Montenegrin government.

“Additional costs associated with the electricity purchase from RES, supplier is obliged to express as a separate item on the account delivered to the ultimate consumer. The item – compensation for encouraging the production of renewable energy, is an addition to the price of electricity”, announced from RAE.

When it comes to the suppliers’ obligations, RAE representatives have said that it was bound to publish the prices for households and other end customers that supplied on the web site, and that, at least once a year, information on the customers rights, including procedures for filing and resolving complaints.

“The supplier is obliged to make on the internet site, among other things, the publication of the program of helping measures to end customers in meeting their contractual obligations, in order to prevent the termination of supply”, stated in RAE.

Before the start of supply, supplier is obliged to complete a certain number of contracts.

The supplier is obliged to supply end customers in accordance with the terms and conditions for the supply, which brings RAE and which contain the payment method, all the rights of customers in terms of public services, the method of notification of the increase in charges before the application of increase and the deadline for filing objections to the bill.

The supplier is obligated to pay for use of the system, services and benefits to operators and other entities for which fees, at regulated prices, are collected.

“Accordingly, it is bound to calculate and bill to end customers use of transmission and distribution electricity systems, fee for the operation of the market operator, ancillary services, to encourage the production of electricity from RES and the other, at prices that cannot be over regulated”, said the representatives of RAE.

They add that the supplier is obliged to sign contract on the supply with the end customer in a written form contract by which are regulated the mutual rights and obligations.

When charged from customers both energy and services, the supplier is obliged to work it only on the basis of the account, which must be clear and understandable, contains information on measured sizes or appropriate consumption profile, on which or with which it submits the information to the customer on the possibilities and submission and resolution manner of objections to the bill.

“On the web page the supplier is obliged to inform customers of any increase in prices and fees in a timely manner and no later than one normal billing period, after the increase takes effect”, announced from the RAE.

If the buyer does not accept the new supply conditions, it has the right to terminate the contract.

“The supplier is obliged to provide the supplier change to every customer that supplies with electricity, in accordance with the procedure and conditions set in the Rules of changing suppliers”, said the representatives of RAE.

They add that the supplier has the right of access to distribution networks and supply customers with electricity, as well as accounting, billing and collection of electricity supplied to the customer. It has the right on the calculation and payment of interest in accordance with the law and giving orders to the distributor for the disconnection of customers who do not fulfill the obligations under the supply contract.

“The supplier should prepare and publish at least once a year on the website the number of end customers which supply was terminated, the reasons for this, as well as the number of customers and the structure of filed and resolved complaints”, concluded from RAE.

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