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No more regulated prices for households—the liberalisation of Romania’s gas market goes ahead as planned

25 March 2020 – Romania’s National Energy Regulatory Authority (“ANRE”) has published in the Official Gazette an order (Order no. 27/2020) setting out measures regarding natural gas supply to households in view of eliminating regulated prices. Order no. 27/2020 will enter into force on 1 April 2020.

In brief, gas suppliers to households that have not yet opted for supplies at competitive market prices have a series of obligations provided by Order No. 27/2020:

  • in order to eliminate regulated gas prices and ensure gas supply from 1 July 2020, households must choose their gas supplier and conclude a contract on gas supply at competitive market prices by 30 June 2020;
  • gas suppliers must inform the households in their portfolio (not having exercised their eligibility right) of the liberalisation of the gas market by sending monthly notices (using the form in Annex 1 to Order No. 27/2020) during the 1 May–30 June 2020 period, together with a gas supply price offer starting with 1 July 2020 and a clear reference as to where the proposed contact can be accessed—the notice and contractual offer must be displayed at the sole point of contact, customer support points and on the homepage of the suppliers’ website;
  • the price offered must be reasonable and transparent, expressed in RON/MWh and must include all costs corresponding to gas supply on the competitive market, including regulated services;
  • should the gas supplier reserve the right to adjust the price in the offer communicated to the client, during the 1 July 2020–30 June 2021 period, it must exhaustively and transparently indicate the grounds leading to a price variation and explicitly describe the way the price would vary;
  • for clients that do not conclude new contracts by 30 June 2020, their previous contracts will continue to apply for the 1 July 2020–30 June 2021 period, with the exception of clauses regarding regulated prices. In such a case, the supplier must continue supply at the price included in the offer sent as per bullet point 2 above; should the price be adjustable, the supplier must notify the new price to the client at least 30 days in advance together with the client’s right to unilaterally terminate the contract in case he does not accept the new price;
  • suppliers must display, as under bullet point 2 above, during the entire 1 July 2020–30 June 2021 period, the gas prices applied for households that have not concluded a contract for gas supply on the competitive market;
  • clients that do not conclude new contracts by 30 June 2020 will also receive from gas suppliers quarterly notices during the 1 July 2020–31 March 2021 period that must include, among others:
  • information regarding the end of regulated gas prices as of 1 July 2020;
  • the right to conclude a gas supply contract on the competitive market with the current supplier or any other supplier of the client’s choosing, as well as the fact that changing the gas supplier is a simple and free of charge process; or
  • information on how to make a market price offer analysis by using the dedicated ANRE comparison platform (available here).
  • during the 1 April 2021–31 May 2021 period, gas suppliers must also send clients in their portfolio that have not concluded gas supply contracts on the competitive market a notification (using the form in Annex 2 to Order No. 27/2020) together with a price offer for gas supply starting 1 July 2021 and with clear reference as to where the proposed contact can be accessed. If the client does not exercise its eligibility right until 30 June 2021 and does not conclude a gas supply contract on the competitive market by that time, the offer presented by the current supplier is considered accepted and consequently the gas supply contract corresponding to the price offer made is deemed as tacitly concluded as of 1 July 2021;
  • it should be noted, however, that clauses allowing the gas supplier to unilaterally amend or supplement the contract are prohibited, in the absence of an additional act.
  • Order No. 27/2020 also introduces monthly and/or quarterly reporting obligations to ANRE for gas suppliers, which must inform the authority about the measures taken as per the points above.

For more information contact Iustinian Captariu, Partner, at

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, or Cătălin Graure, Senior Associate, at .