Finnish Energy’s Network Council had recommended in October 2015 that all electricity transmission companies should apply the same time-based measurements in their transmission tariffs. The FCCA initiated its own investigation in the matter in early 2016 having been contacted by customers of the capital region’s electricity transmission companies.
Electricity suppliers offer two-rate time-of-day night and season electricity products, meaning that energy consumed during the daytime or during winter is more expensive than at other times. Typically this applies to those who have electric heating. As a result of Finnish Energy’s recommendation, the time-based electricity prices of the more expensive daytime hours applied by the capital region’s electricity transmission companies increased considerably compared to the cheaper night prices. The change had an effect on the prices of two-rate time-of-day electrical energy products.
The Competition Act and the European Union’s competition rules ban decisions by business consortia, the purpose of result of which is that competition is significantly prevented, limited or distorted. The ban concerns decisions by business consortia that limit or control the use of competitive measures of companies that are competing with each other.
The FCCA’s investigation did not find evidence that the purpose of the recommendation on two-rate time-of-day electrical energy products was to unify the competitive behaviour of electricity transmission companies and to restrict competition in the retail sale of electricity.
According to the FCCA, the prices of two-rate time-of-day electrical energy products had not risen as a result of the recommendation, because the electricity suppliers who increased the number of more expensive daytime energy hours decreased the sales prices of two-rate time-of-day electrical energy products to compensate for the price increase.