Paris, March 8. 2012
The AFIEG (French Independent Association of Electricity and Gas) aims at being a key contact point for public decision makers in order to promote an alternative to the current malfunctions of energy markets, in favor of final consumers. Its founding members are ALPIQ, ENEL, EON and VATTENFALL.
Operating on the French market since its narrow opening to competition, AFIEG members, among which are some major European energy companies, have already invested in French production capacities. Nevertheless, this opening to competition needs to be improved in order to attract the massive investments the French electricity sector needs. AFIEG will notably issue recommendations concerning nuclear energy and hydroelectric concessions.
As electricity suppliers and apart from EDF, AFIEG members account for two thirds of electricity supplied to non-residential consumers (industrial and service companies). Nevertheless, the fact that 85% of the total electricity supplied in France is sold by EDF and 85% of the remaining volume also is, indirectly, through the ARENH (Accès Régulé à l’Electricité Nucléaire Historique), shows that recent regulatory evolutions do not allow for an open and fair competition yet.
Although the gas market is more open, real alternatives for consumers are still too few, mostly because the market is extremely complex to balance, because access to storage facilities remains difficult, and because the overall gas policy is not market-oriented enough.
These are a few reasons why AFIEG works at promoting an open and fair competition on energy markets and, in that regard, will share its independent expertise on energy issues in France, based on its members’ experience of open markets elsewhere in Europe.
According to Fleur Thesmar, AFIEG’s President, “competition on energy markets is not only about supply, but also about production. Nowhere else in Europe does a single company hold more than 50% of the national energy market share. An open and competitive business framework is a prerequisite to attracting the heavy investments France needs to secure its energy supply.”
AFIEG replaces the AFELINS (Association for Electricity Supply to Industry and Services, created in 2008), while considerably expanding its scope of action.