The French capacity mechanism is on track to get the better of European rules

Up until this point, France has not been particularly noted for its punctuality in transposing the European Directives relating to the energy sector. In fact, it was only in 10 February 2000, that being more than a year late, that the Directive of 19 December 1996 concerning common rules for the internal electricity market was transposed into French law. As for natural gas, the Law of 3 January 2003 transposed the Directive of 22 June 1998 concerning common rules for the internal natural gas market over two years late and following an intense debate which led to nearly 700 parliamentary amendments.  Some have interpreted these delays as a lack of French enthusiasm for the process of opening energy markets.

On the other hand, as far as remuneration of capacities is concerned, France is moving into position as a pioneer in establishing a mechanism consistent with the principles defined by the European Commission, particularly as regards the subject of cross-border participation of foreign capacities in capacity mechanisms.

Be that as it may, with the launch of the Commission’s in-depth investigation of the French capacity mechanism in November 2015, the matter hardly seems like it’s off to a great start!

The intense negotiations and consultations with stakeholders, which came to a head in summer of 2016, resulted in the European Commission’s approval decision dated 8 November 2016 through the implementation of three pillars of action:

  • Pillar for competition: 2017 supply year
  • Pillar on the participation of cross-border capacities: 2019 supply year
  • Pillar for promoting investment in new capacities: 2019 supply year

The rules of the French mechanism as published by the Order of 29 November 2016 have addressed the pillar for competition to the Commission’s satisfaction, and the other two pillars are the subject of a dialogue that is well underway, organised by the RTE [Electricity Transmission Network] since the spring of 2017.

As these changes will lead to a modification of the Decree of 14 December 2012, the (tight) schedule is as follows:

  • September 2017: Decree proposals (publication expected December 2017)
  • October 2017: Resume dialogue on new rules
  • Mid-2018: Publication of new rules
  • 2019: Entry into force of explicit participation and first calls for tenders for new capacities

The first items currently emerging from the consultations are the following:

Cross-border capacities: the first explicit participation of foreign capacities is planned starting from supply year (AL) 2019

  • Step 1: determination (through a probabilistic study) of an aggregate volume allocated to the explicit participation of foreign entities (July-August 2018).
  • Step 2: definition of a distribution key for this aggregate volume so as to grant a certain level of interconnection tickets per border where the hybrid solution is established (July-August 2018).
  • Step 3: organisation, by border where the hybrid solution is implemented, of auctions on interconnection tickets (September 2018).
  • Step 4: certification of border production/clearance capacities which have acquired interconnection tickets and monitoring of these capacities during the supply year (These capacities may participate in the EPEX Spot auctions for AL 19, 2 to 3 in 2018).

Long-term contractualisation: 3 auctions are planned in 2019 to cover the periods from 2020 to 2026, 2021 to 2027 and 2022 to 2028.

  • Objectives: Competition, guidance throughout the energy transition, reduction of the cost for consumers, non-distortion of the market.
  • Eligibility: The system is open to any new capacity which does not already have a support mechanism.
  • Contractualisation: Contract for difference of 7-year duration.
  • Selection: The selection will be take place via auction through the comparison of offers with a demand curve, which will integrate a probabilistic correlation model including market modelling and which will be adjusted in consideration of the value of the capacity on the market.

These modifications will not occur without posing some difficulties for the players.  To illustrate, we wish to bring up the case of the first capacity auction for AL 2019, scheduled for December 2017: on this date, parameters affecting the supply/demand balance will not yet be established. In particular, the actors won’t know the safety coefficient that will apply to their obligations (a factor which will increase depending on explicit participation selected), and these foreign capacities won’t yet be able to participate. In turn, multiannual contracting may complicate the reference cost of capacity for the supplier.

While the debate over the new package (the 4th) is in full swing, including where reworking the Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council on the internal electricity market is concerned, it seems already established that the French capacity compensation mechanism will be very much in compliance with this regulation (Article 22) – and by anticipation…


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Profesional Experience & Education

Diego graduated in Political Economy at King’s College University (London – 2021). He started his professional career in a family business in Madrid as an operations manager. Diego then studied a Master in Management and Master in Computer Science at IE University (Madrid – 2022), during which he participated as an Information Technology (IT) intern in a startup. In May 2023, Diego joined the HES team as an intern specialised in programming models. In his first project, he developed a software tool for modelling the unavailability of the French nuclear fleet. Afterwards, Diego has also participated in the development of new software tools for modelling price curves, generation asset performance and other topics related to the energy market. 

Diego Marroquin

Junior Consultant

Haya Energy-6

Profesional Experience

Céline joined Haya Energy Solutions in November 2021 as marketing and administration manager. She had a first professional experience in the tourism sector as a social media manager. At HES, her activities are focused on the development of the company’s visibility at European level through: commercial actions, content marketing and development of brand strategy. Céline is also involved in the management of the company’s communication: optimisation of the website (WordPress & Elementor), LinkedIn, publication of the monthly newsletter and the organisation of conferences. Céline participates in energy projects with the clients and acts as coordinator and project manager. Finally, she is in charge of administration (accounting, expenses management, invoicing).   


Céline graduated in Spanish and English Philology at La Sorbonne (France – 2018) and holds a Master’s degree in Project Management and Cultural Tourism (Clermont-Ferrand/ Buenos Aires – 2021). 

Céline Haya Sauvage

Marketing Responsible

Céline Sauvage

Investment Advice

“Decarbonization of the Energy and Transport sectors is arguably today’s main economic driver for the industry.”

Profesional Experience

His career started in civil engineering as a Project Manager in France, Martinique and Australia. Afterwards, he became the General Manager of a subsidiary in Venezuela. In 1992, he established Dalkia in Germany (district heating, cogeneration, and partnerships) and represented Véolia in Thailand. In 2000, he opened the commercial office of Endesa in France to take advantage of the liberalized retail market. From 2006, as a development Manager at Endesa France, he led Endesa’s plan for Combined Cycle generation in France and developed the wind and PV portfolio of Snet at the same time. Philippe Boulanger worked for 3 years at E.ON’s headquarters coordinating the company´s activities in France. He was strongly involved in the French hydro concession renewal project. As a Senior Vice President – Project Director at Solvay Energy Services from April 2012 to February 2014 he was in charge of the H2/Power to gas and European direct market access deployment projects. Philippe has been an HES expert since 2014.


Philippe Boulanger holds engineering degrees both from the Ecole Polytechnique and the Ecole Nationale des Ponts & Chaussées (France) and has a combined experience of more than 25 years in energy and infrastructure. In addition to English, Mr. Boulanger is fluent in French, German & Spanish.

Philippe Boulanger

Electricity Expert


“The world is changing. New investors pay particular attention to the energy sector while historical actors adapt their position to the market.”

Profesional Experience

Antonio started his career in the electricity sector in 1991 working as a member of the General Manager’s team at Sevillana de Electricidad (Spain). In 1997, he was appointed head of commercial regulation at Endesa Distribución. In 2000, he joined the mergers and acquisitions (M&A) department of Endesa Europe. He was appointed Managing Director of Endesa Power Trading Ltd (UK) in 2003. A year later, he became responsible for energy management at SNET (France). In 2008, he was appointed Managing Director of SNET (France). In 2009, he became Director of Corporate Development at E.ON France. In 2011, he founded Haya Energy Solutions (HES), a consulting firm focused on optimising the energy management of consumers, producers and retailers of gas and electricity. From 2015 to 2018, Antonio combined the consulting activity at HES with the general management of 2 production facilities in France (2 CCGTs x 410MW), owned by KKR. At the end of 2018, he joined Asterion Industrial Partners, an infrastructure investment fund, as an operating partner. Antonio currently devotes most of his efforts to the Asterion Portfolio, while advising through HES companies in the energy sector in France, Italy, Germany, UK and Spain. 


Antonio graduated from the Escuela Técnica Superior de Ingenieros of Seville (Spain) and holds an MBA degree from Deusto University (Spain). 

Antonio Haya