Implementing in Belgium EU-directive 96/92 on the internal market for electricity
Faculty of Applied Economics
Cleveland :International Association for Energy Economics, 1998
Annual Conference of the International-Association-for-Energy-Economics, (IAEE), May 13-16, 1998, Quebec City, Canada
University of Antwerp
Since 1989 the Belgian electricity market has continuously been restructured. The producers merged to a single operator controling nearly all generation, the transmission grid and 80 % of the distribution activities. This financial and strategic stronghold, spearheaded by Tractebel, develops a very active policy abroad for acquiring assets in the electricity and gas sectors. This results in Tractebel becoming one of the most succesful 'independent' operators in the international electricity and gas markets. In Belgium, Tractebel succesfully maintains its dominant position, barring the electricity and gas markets for entry by foreign competitors and by domestic independent producers. In our paper we give an overview of the main developments within Belgium since 1989, e.g. the merger of the power producers Ebes, Intercom and Unerg into Electrabel, the substitution of Suez-Lyonnaise des Eaux (F.) for Scociete Generale (B.) as the financial mother holding of Tractebel, the internal restructuring of Electrabel and the guest-merger with the small public producer SPE, the renewed control by Electrabel on the majority of the distribution utilities in 1996.