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Making consumers real players in the energy market

European Economic and Social Committee - CES/14/26   26/03/2014

Other available languages: FR DE ES IT PL


26 March 2014

Making consumers real players in the energy market

The completion of the internal electricity market – due in 2014 – is absolutely vital. Bottlenecks have to be eliminated by speeding up investments in transmission infrastructure, strengthening electricity interconnection and minimising incompatible national policies. Public intervention is also critical, not least in order to protect vulnerable consumers. However public measures have to be more coordinated at national and local levels across Europe. The public service obligations that have already been agreed must also be put in place.

Renewables at centre stage – Europeanisation of support schemes

Renewables have the greatest potential to reduce Europe's energy dependence. The EESC champions the increased use of renewables at the lowest possible cost and advocates that support be directed mainly to immature technologies. It therefore asks the Commission to provide a definition of a "mature energy source". "We strongly support the Europeanisation of renewable support schemes and urge the Commission to do more to facilitate cooperation mechanisms between Member States, because all these measures help contain energy prices and secure energy supply," says Pierre Jean Coulon, rapporteur for the EESC's opinion on a Commission's communication1 providing Member States with guidance on how to make the most of public intervention.

Making the energy market work for consumers

Demand-response technology and energy efficiency offer enormous potential in reducing consumption. The EESC strongly supports the promotion of these technologies in a user-friendly way with necessary and easily understandable information provided without additional costs.

"Electricity is an essential basic commodity and must be managed as such," stresses Sorin Ionita, co-rapporteur and an EESC member from Romania. The EESC urges the Commission to provide better safeguards and further strengthen public service obligations, irrespective of current austerity constraints.

For more information, please contact:

EESC Press Unit


Tel.: +32 2 546 8141


The European Economic and Social Committee represents the various economic and social components of organised civil society. It is an institutional consultative body established by the 1957 Treaty of Rome. Its consultative role enables its members, and hence the organisations they represent, to participate in the EU decision-making process. The Committee has 353 members from across Europe, who are appointed by the Council of the European Union.


1 :

Delivering the internal electricity market and making the most of public intervention C(2013) 7243 fnal

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