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Coexistence of unregulated and regulated LNG terminals : An evaluation in the light of the Finnish gas market liberalisation

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Title: Coexistence of unregulated and regulated LNG terminals : An evaluation in the light of the Finnish gas market liberalisation
Author(s): Mittler, Cea
Contributor: University of Helsinki, Faculty of Law
Discipline: European law
Language: English
Acceptance year: 2016
The aim of this Thesis is to evaluate the underlying access regulation pertaining to LNG terminals resulting in the coexistence of unregulated and regulated LNG terminals. Correspondingly comparing the situation on liberalised markets with the proposed regulation in Finland. There are two ground presumptions that lays down the frame for the Thesis. The first presumption believes that a liberalised market model is better for Finland compared to the current isolated market status. The rationale is based on the common targets set by the EU supporting the full implementation of the Third Gas Directive and opening the market for competition. Although the argumentation of the Thesis support a liberalised market, there are certain concerns lingering in the legislative air pertaining to the LNG terminal access regime. In light of these the Thesis’s discussion is built around these possible shortcomings. As the thesis concludes that a well-formulated, thoughtful and comprehensive liberalisation will bring about more advantages than disadvantages, a thoroughly discussion on the market triggers will be given. The second presumption is that regulated and unregulated regimes are not good or bad per se, the decision to choose between them by regulators should take into account the characteristics of the market. As will be later demonstrated, many regulatory schemes are hybrid, showing features of both access regimes. These two presumptions embodies the supporting pillars of this Thesis, the theme of which is the relationship between and the evaluation of unregulated and regulated access to LNG terminals. The object is to discuss and evaluate the legal framework around access regimes pertaining to LNG terminals and consequently add content to the presumptions. The complexity of the questions is demonstrated by the opinions given by market participants during the comment round of the proposal. There is a visible opposition to apply the reformed NGMA to off-grid terminals. These opinions, the opposition and the arguments surrounding the proposed legislation, gives this Thesis its core. However, this is not only a national resistance but a commonly discussed question: whether the access regime, where a coexistence of both unregulated and regulated access regimes is applicable, fully serve the intention of a liberalised LNG market?

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