The process for the liberalization of the natural gas market in Portugal started in 2007. Today, all consumers in Portugal can acquire natural gas on the free market. Market agents compete on the free market selling gas, and charging consumers for both access to the Natural Gas Public Network (RPGN) as well as for the commodity and service.
Consumers with an annual consumption of 500 m3 or less may remain within the regulated system. In this case, they are supplied by the last resort retail supplier in the respective distribution network to which the consumers are connected, at regulated prices.
In this process, infrastructure access tariffs are due by consumers to the RPGN infrastructure operators which work under the public service concession regime. These operators are responsible for the transport, storage, operation and maintenance of the RPGN infrastructures and include the operators of the Transmission Network, Liquefied Natural Gas Reception, Storage and Regasification Terminal, Underground Storage and the operators of Regional and Local Distribution Networks.