European Court defends right of legal recourse for gas traders


The European Court of Justice today ruled that Hungarian regulations that prohibit legal recourse by gas traders against resolutions affecting them that are made by the national regulatory authority go against European Union rules, Hungarian news agency MTI reported.

The case involved the local unit of German utilities giant E.ON challenging a resolution by the Hungarian Energy and Utilities Regulatory Authority which instructed transmission system operator FGSZ Földgázszállító to modify its rules of trade and operation to create a more level playing field on the deregulated gas market, MTI says. FGSZ turned to the authority for guidance after E.ON made requests for a large volume of capacity, prompting a rethink of its mandate to ensure access to all market players free of discrimination, the news agency added.

According to MTI’s report, the Hungarian court ruled that E.ON could not challenge a resolution that was addressed to FGSZ and not itself, but the European Court said that prohibiting E.ON from challenging the resolution went against the EU principle of effective judicial protection.


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