Market Transparency Body for Electricity and Gas Wholesale Trading
In December 2012 the Act on the creation of a market transparency body for electricity and gas wholesale trading (MTB Act) formed the basis for more extensive monitoring of the wholesale electricity and gas markets.
It provided for the installation of a Market Transparency Body for Wholesale Electricity and Gas Markets at the Federal Network Agency, whose tasks are to be carried out jointly by the Federal Network Agency and the Bundeskartellamt.
The major task of the Market Transparency Body for Electricity/Gas is to monitor electricity and gas wholesale trading to detect irregularities in price developments at the wholesale level which can be attributed to abusive practices, either in the area of trading or as a result of an abuse of market power. In order to do this, the Market Transparency Body will collect and assess data on commercial transactions as well as fundamental data.
The activities of the Market Transparency Body for Electricity/Gas are part of a European legal framework for monitoring wholesale energy markets in order to prevent insider trading and market manipulation (REMIT Regulation). For its monitoring activities the Market Transparency Body receives relevant data for the German market collected at European level on the basis of the REMIT Regulation and can collect additional data in compliance with the provisions of the MTB Act.
Whereas the activities of the Market Transparency Body for Electricity/Gas focus on identifying insider trading, market manipulation and the abuse of market power, the MTB Act also covers issues relating to the Securities Trading Act and Stock Exchange Act. Should the data collected give an indication that the respective legal provisions have been violated, the Market Transparency Body for Electricity/Gas will inform the competent enforcement authority and refer any suspect cases to that authority.
The Bundeskartellamt's activities
The Bundeskartellamt's activities in this area focus primarily on prohibiting the abuse of a dominant position. With its data collection and assessment activities, the Market Transparency Body for Electricity/Gas assists the Bundeskartellamt in the areas of merger control and sector inquiries. These data are also made available to the Federal Network Agency and Bundeskartellamt for their monitoring duties (Section 35 of the Energy Industry Act (EnWG) and Section 48 (3) GWB), and for the Federal Network Agency's other duties under the Energy Industry Act.
The launch of the Market Transparency Body for Electricity/Gas is closely coordinated with the creation of a system to collect and analyse data at European level based on the REMIT Regulation. Conclusion of the necessary preparatory work for this supervision activity at European and national level is scheduled for the end of 2014.