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PEGAS and GRTgaz extend coupling interventions to weekends

Paris, 20 September 2016 – The pan-European gas trading platform PEGAS and the French natural gas transmission system operator GRTgaz announced the extension of the operating hours of the coupling mechanism between France’s PEG Nord and TRS delivery zones.

From 24 September onwards, the coupling will be operational also on weekends and bank holidays. This development follows the need of market participants and the request of the French regulator Commission de Regulation de l’Energie (CRE).

In July 2011, GRTgaz and Powernext launched the first coupling initiative in the European gas sector in July 2011 with the support of CRE. As part of this cooperation, GRTgaz intervenes on PEGAS Spot by making available parts of its North/South transmission capacity through the TRS / PEG Nord Day-Ahead and Week-End Spread contracts.

This is meant to ensure optimal usage of the pipeline capacity between TRS and PEG Nord, which is regularly congested today. Until 2018, this congestion will be relieved through investments in pipeline capacity, which will enable the zones to be merged later on.

Richard Katz, Powernext’s Sales Director, comments: “This market coupling model which we developed for our customers together with CRE allows to trade continuously both markets and does not restrict nomination rights. It is therefore well adapted to the specificities of the gas market. It is appropriate on border points that are regularly congested, like the PEG Nord – TRS link is and shall remain until physical investments are done.”

Catherine Brun, GRTgaz’s Vice President Marketing and Sales, adds: “The market coupling mechanism was successful in improving price convergence and increasing liquidity between the two zones. It underlines the value of the close and lasting collaboration between GRTgaz and Powernext. It will continue until the merger of the French zones foreseen in 2018.”