While Energy and Infrastructure markets are fast-moving they are also the subject of complex regulation. Our clients require their legal advisers to understand both the regulatory and licensing regimes and the particular responsibilities of operating in a regulated environment. Improved cross-border network interconnection remains a priority for 2020 and beyond.
From our Brussels office we are well placed to offer our clients effective advice and insights on the implementation of the EU regulatory regime for gas, electricity and renewables. Trends indicate that EU, US, Chinese and Japanese trade in the energy sector may all be affected by disputes affecting renewables themselves (biofuels) and renewable technologies (solar, wind).
We assist clients with the practical issues that result from implementation of the wider policy goals providing solutions to complex licensing and planning, contracting, regulatory, and environmental issues. These include application of rules concerning access to infrastructure and unbundling of networks - to living with monopoly power. Our professional contacts enable us to assemble an interdisciplinary network to tackle issues such as the structuring of cross border interconnectors and the associated regulatory regimes. Apart from financing; projects (for example the licensing and installation of wind turbines) typically require a range of consents and permits from central and local government. In Belgium both Federal and Regional (Walloon, Flanders and the Brussels region) law and regulation have a role to play. We can help to identify and co-ordinate correct procedures and minimise delays.
See also: Competition Law, Environment, & International Trade.
The energy 2020 strategy for competitive, sustainable and secure energy defines EU energy priorities, including boosting technological leadership for a ten year period:
- Liberalisation – affecting markets, competition and efficiency;
- Sustainability – requiring a 20% reduction in CO² emissions in the territories of member states, a 20% reduction in energy consumption, use of 20% renewable energy by 2020; and
- Security of supplies.