ANRE – Fines for Irregularities in Changing the Natural Gas and Electricity Supplier

Liberalization of the market of public utilities supply has been seen with hope and optimism by the end-consumers, which obviously want prices paid to be as low as possible. But things haven’t been that way in 2019, which is why the National Regulatory Authority for Energy (ANRE) applied civil fines of RON 1.545mln, as a result of failure to comply with the legal provisions on changing the supplier and use of unfair commercial practices by suppliers.

“One of the main objectives of ANRE is to increase competition on the retail market by increasing the degree of customer involvement in changing the supplier. In order to increase the degree of awareness among suppliers, the importance of changing the supplier in the process of retail market development and stopping any unfair/unlawful practices thereof, ANRE has invited electricity and natural gas suppliers to the meeting of the Regulatory Committee, during which they were presented with the aspects investigated by ANRE during 2019, the measures taken, the regulatory framework, the best practices, as well as the perspectives of the process of changing the supplier which, starting with 2026, must not take more than 24 hours and must be possible in any working day, according to the provisions of the Directive (EU) 2019/944 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 5 June 2019 on common rules for the internal market for electricity,” a press release issued by ANRE mentions. The regulatory authority mentions that the process of changing the supplier by a consumer is free of charge.

During 2019 there was a significant increase in complaints by customers regarding suppliers’ failure to comply with the legal provisions on changing the supplier and the use by them of unfair commercial practices. Thus, following these findings, control actions were initiated, finalized by the application of civil fines amounting to RON 1,545 million, of which RON 465,000 in the field of electricity and RON 1,080 million in the field of natural gas.

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