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Elering, the Estonian gas system operator, submitted applications to the Estonian Competition Authority in May to approve the price of the network service and the standard terms and conditions of domestic transmission services. The company wishes to commence the provision of network services based on the renewed standard terms and conditions from 1 July 2025.

The changes in the rates are caused by currently ongoing changes in the energy sector, but the respective requirement also arises from a directive of the European Union. Elering implemented a similar change in the provision of electricity transmission services, which constitutes its second principal area of activity, in the previous year, by renewing the structure of electricity transmission rates with the aim of ensuring optimal development of the network.

Riina Käi, Member of the Management Board and Chief Financial Officer of Elering, explained that the change in the structure of gas network charges will replace the current volume-based charge with a charge based on the use of infrastructure when gas is transported. “The same principle is used in other fields as well, for example in telecommunications, where consumers do not pay for the number of days in which they use the internet, but instead pay for being able to access the service at the time they require it,” Käi noted.

The objective of the change in the pricing structure of the network service is to ensure the sustainability of the Estonian natural gas transmission network. Gas consumption has decreased due to the energy crisis and the consumption pattern has become less predictable than before while the fixed maintenance costs of gas infrastructure have remained the same. For costs to be divided fairly and for them to meet the agreed capacity, the charges also need to be divided more fairly.

“It must definitely be understood that Elering will not collect more money from its clients with this change and it is not the purpose of the change,” explained Riina Käi. “The reorganization of the structure of the network charges is related to clients using Elering’s transmission services, who comprise gas distribution network companies and major consumers. The change does not directly affect the end users of gas, but it will in turn depend on the distribution network companies as to how the new network charge structure affects them and what decisions they wish to make in this regard.”

Elering has held Gas Market Council sessions at least once every quarter since the acquisition of the natural gas transmission network with the purpose of ensuring transparency. All market participants are involved and welcome to take part in the sessions. Developments related to the gas market and future perspectives are clarified and discussed together with stakeholders in the Council.

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