Paris, 4 April 2017. The pan-European gas trading platform PEGAS, operated by Powernext, has published a new position paper in response to the study initiated by E-Control on the performance of the Austrian gas market and the impact potential of market area integrations. According to Powernext, the CEGH hub is already the reference market in Central Eastern Europe (CEE). An integration with neighbouring markets like Slovenia, Slovakia and Croatia could further bundle liquidity in CEE and reduce dependency on oil-indexed contracts.
The study on potential market area mergers has been conducted by the independent consultant WECOM. In 2016, the Bundesnetzagentur in Germany launched a similar study on the German gas market working with the same consultant. Both studies are in line with the ACER gas target model II as implemented in 2015, requiring national regulators to evaluate their domestic markets with the aim of realizing a well-functioning, competitive gas market in Europe.
The Central European Gas Hub AG (CEGH), located in Vienna, is the leading hub for gas trading in the Central and Eastern European region (CEE). Since 2016, the CEGH Gas Exchange spot and futures contracts are integrated into the PEGAS platform. CEGH acts as an important market facilitator in the region as well as a gateway for trading between Eastern and Western Europe.
PEGAS supports the integration of Central Eastern market zones, such as Slovenia, Slovakia and Croatia, which currently suffer from a lack of liquidity. “Merging those market zones with the Austrian market could help decouple Central Eastern European market areas further from predominating oil-index pricing in the region and increase liquidity”, states Egbert Laege, CEO of Powernext.
Concerning more mature and liquid market zones, such as Germany and Italy, PEGAS is convinced that market integration will not add significant value despite the high costs required for such projects. Powernext raised similar arguments, when an integration of German hubs with the Dutch TTF was discussed last year.
The position paper can be found here.
Powernext is a regulated market operating under AMF supervision. Powernext manages the natural gas activities of the EEX Group under the PEGAS brand throughout Europe, and operates the National Registry for electricity guarantees of origin in France. For more information: www.powernext.com
PEGAS is the central gas trading platform of EEX Group operated by Powernext. PEGAS provides its members with access to all products on one single platform and allows them to trade natural gas contracts in the Austrian, Belgian, Danish, Dutch, French, German, Italian and UK market areas. The product range of PEGAS covers spot and derivatives contracts for the major European gas hubs as well as trading in location and time spread products. This setup enables market harmonisation and forms the preferred pan-European natural gas market. For more information: www.pegas-trading.com