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Press Release

Creating New Electricity Markets in Europe to Meet Energy Policy Challenges - GE and E3G Publish Report on Energy Market Reform in Europe

April 17, 2013

Brussels April 17th 2013: GE (General Electric) has joined forces with the influential think-tank, E3G (Third Generation Environmentalism), to publish a report that highlights the major opportunities and challenges for power generation investment in Europe.

Liberalised electricity markets have existed around the world for over two decades and have delivered many benefits to consumers. However in some regions we are now witnessing calls for reform of these markets to meet the three major challenges of security of supply, environmental objectives and affordability.

Co-author Markus Becker of GE said: "Creating new electricity markets will be vital to the EU at an important time for consumers, industry and EU competitiveness. We hope to promote a discussion in Europe that will make a valuable contribution at an important time for the energy sector. The objective of this paper is to frame the EMR landscape in simple terms and promote a dialogue amongst policy-makers and other stakeholders charged with implementing changes to electricity markets.

The twin desire to learn from the experience of operating electricity markets and to support the decarbonisation of the sector going forward has given rise to various market reform initiatives. These have ranged from incremental 'tinkering' with existing frameworks to fundamental overhauls of the key design elements."

According to the paper, four key issues comprise the EMR landscape. They include the need to attract sufficient, efficiently financed investment in low carbon generation; ensuring that system operators can maintain grid reliability with increasing volumes of intermittent renewable generation; retail electricity markets are competitive and customers can be confident that they are receiving a good deal from their supplier; and enabling cost-effective investments in the demand side of the market to reduce overall demand and provide balancing services.

E3G's Simon Skillings said: "Electricity market reform (EMR) is a complicated and multi-faceted topic. Although many of the issues are applicable to all electricity markets, they represent particular challenges for the EU as policy-makers attempt to establish a single, integrated European energy market. This paper sets out the electricity market reform landscape and identifies the most important changes that need to be pursued to meet future policy challenges."

In particular, this analysis illustrates that market reform should not be charachterised as an exercise in re-regulation. Rather, it is a necessary step to remove the barriers that have prevented competition and innovation from reaching all areas of the market to deliver maximum benefits to consumers and society at large.


About GE Europe:
For more than 100 years GE has been investing in growing its presence across Europe. Today each of our global businesses has a strong presence in the region and we have grown our European employee base from 3,000 people in 1990 to more than 84,000 people today. Europe hosts the headquarters of a number of GE's global businesses.

GE is one of the world's leading suppliers of power generation and energy delivery technologies. GE Power & Water, GE Energy Management and GE Oil & Gas - work together to provide integrated product and service solutions in all areas of the energy industry including coal, oil, natural gas and nuclear energy; renewable resources such as water, wind, solar and biogas; and other alternative fuels.

Europe is also an important centre of innovation, research and development for the company with our Global Research Centre located in Munich, Germany. In Europe we have more than 36,000 employees working in research and development, engineering and manufacturing. In total GE invests more than €4billion per year on R&D globally.

About E3G:
E3G is an independent, nonprofit European organisation operating in the public interest to accelerate the global transition to sustainable development. E3G builds cross-sectoral coalitions to achieve carefully defined outcomes, chosen for their capacity to leverage change.

E3G works closely with like-minded partners in government, politics, business, civil society, science, the media, public interest foundations and elsewhere.

Simon Ashwell
GE Energy Government Affairs & Policy - Europe
[email protected]

Markus Becker
GE Oil & Gas Government Affairs & Policy
[email protected]

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