Energy Sector Laws
Energy sector laws in emerging markets frequently need to be rewritten to reflect new market designs, new Government policies regarding private participation in the electricity or gas sectors, evolving strategies to encourage renewable energy investments, and the role of newly-created regulatory authorities. Ms. Weller has drafted new laws and edited existing laws in numerous emerging markets to bring them into compliance with a country's objectives and/or its international obligations (such as the Energy Community Treaty and European Commission Directives and Regulations).
Energy Market Design
Energy markets are always changing, whether in North America and Europe or in emerging economies. Market liberalization is an on-going process and market designs must constantly adapt to new technology, environmental and competition concerns, and energy security needs. Energy Law International stays abreast of new market design developments in electricity and natural gas and can advise on needed sector reforms to ensure that a country's market designs comply with international best practices.
Creating New Regulatory Authorities
Centrally-planned economies transitioning to market driven economies frequently need help in establishing independent agencies which can insulate investors from political pressures. Energy infrastructure investors need the additional assurance of stable, accountable and predictable regulation to complement Implementation Agreements and MOUs. Energy Law International 's Julia Weller has worked extensively in establishing and strengthening autonomous energy regulatory authorities.
The first step in providing financial assistance to a country is often knowing where the help is needed. International Financial Institutions engage experts, such as Energy Law International, to provide a "gap analysis" and a baseline status assessment before moving forward with loans for infrastructure projects. Ms. Weller has provided such assessments and performed SWOT analyses for the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, The World Bank and the US Agency for International Development.
New regulatory authorities and young Ministries are often faced with the daunting task of completing numerous compliance reports required as a condition of financial support or participation in an international organization. Their staff also need training on the functions they need to fulfill under a new law. Energy Law International can provide the training and support needed. Ms. Weller has years of experience working for the U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission early in her career and has advised and provided training to new regulators and Ministry personnel in numerous countries.
Market design flaws will always be exploited by someone and no market design is without its flaws. Market monitoring is an important function, either of independent market monitors as in the U.S. or of the national regulatory authorities, to ensure a level playing field. Equally critical is transparency in decision-making by the Government and by regulators to combat any appearance of improprieties. Too many emerging markets have seen their growth stymied by corruption. Energy Law International can advise on legal frameworks to minimize the potential for corruption.