Vertical Natural Gas Transportation Capacity, Upstream Commodity Contracts and EU Competition Law
Because the EU depends on a very small number of external suppliers for its natural gas, energy security issues inevitably arise. In theory, competition law should regulate and adjudicate such issues. Yet, because contracts between EU companies and producers are highly sensitive and politically charged, the application of EU competition law to natural gas contracts is far from clear. This important book, drawing on ECJ case law, Commission administrative cases and inquiries, and the full range of relevant legal and economic theory, provides an extremely valuable and detailed study of how EU competition law can be applied to long-term natural gas capacity reservation and commodity contracts. Issues and topics such as the following arise in the course of the analysis: Third Gas Market Directive provisions; Article 102 TFEU cases on strategic under-investment; pre-liberation or "legacy" gas contracts (e.g., with Algeria and Russia); "right of first refusal"; take-or-pay requirement; third-party access; ownership unbundling; effect of elimination of priority access regimes; short-term trading; spot markets; and law and economics of vertical restraints. Focusing on the foreclosing effect of long-term upstream commodity contracts, the author recommends restrictions on the use of capacity reservation contracts, and analyses the efficacy of security of supply as a competition law defence in cases relating to such contracts.
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agreements Antitrust approach Article 102 TFEU capacity contracts capacity reservations Commission press release Commission’s commodity contracts Competition Law Review Competition Policy context decision destination clauses discussed dominant company dominant position E.ON economic effect electricity market Energy Charter Treaty Energy Law energy markets Energy Security environmental essential facility EU competition law EU energy policy European Competition Law European Energy European Parliament European Union example exemption factors foreclosure Gas Market Directive gas supply contracts Gazprom Ibid import infrastructure interconnectors internal market investment issues legal certainty liberalisation long-term contracts long-term upstream Member natural gas markets Neelie Kroes noted O2 Germany objective OGEL ownership unbundling Oxford University Press pipeline production Regulation EC regulatory relating requires restrictions risk Roggenkamp Russia Second Gas Market Sector Inquiry sector-specific regulation security of supply significant Sonatrach supplier take-or-pay Talus Third Gas Market transmission transportation vertical agreements volumes Wašlde