Third party access exemptions

Open and non-discriminatory access to the networks by those who do not own the physical network infrastructure, known as third party access (TPA), is fundamental in facilitating greater competition and making energy markets work effectively.

Owners and operators of the electricity networks, the transmission system operator (SO) and the distribution system operators (DSOs), and the owners/ operators of interconnectors, are obliged by European legislation and related licence conditions to provide non-discriminatory access to their lines, pipes and other facilities to third parties.

Under EU legislation, interconnectors, storage facilities and LNG import terminals may apply for an exemption from being required to offer access to third parties. This route is intended to promote the development of such facilities within GB.

Ofgem considers each request for exemption on a case by case basis to see if certain criteria set out in legislation  are met. We have already taken a number of decisions to provide exemptions.

As part of the granting of an exemption we may, and in some circumstances are  required to, impose certain conditions on the operation of the facility (for example, the exemption may be limited to a certain time period).    

The GB Markets team oversees the process for considering applications for exemption from the Directive Regulated Third Party Access (RTPA) requirements. This largely covers the following types of infrastructure development:

  • gas and electricity interconnectors to other countries
  • gas storage facilities
  • Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) importation facilities.


Publications and updates

  • Published: 9th Jan 2019
  • Charts and data
  • 1 Associated documents
See information regarding the existing, operational gas storage facilities in GB, and those due to become operational in 2019.

  • Published: 4th Jun 2015
  • Decisions
  • 2 Associated documents
We are required to revoke the third party access exemption for phase 4 of Isle of Grain LNG, as construction of this phase of the facility has not started within 2 years of the exemption being approved.

  • Published: 1st Jun 2015
  • Decisions
  • 1 Associated documents
We have decided that SSEHL should not be granted an MFE for the Hornsea storage facility. This letter sets out our decision.

  • Published: 27th Feb 2015
  • Closed: 24th Apr 2015
  • Consultations and responses
  • 6 Associated documents
We are consulting on our initial view not to grant a Minor Facilities Exemption to SSE in respect of the Hornsea gas storage facility.

  • Published: 26th Jun 2014
  • Decisions
  • 1 Associated documents
We have decided to grant Storengy UK a minor facility exemption (MFE) for phase 2 of the Stublach gas storage facility.

  • Published: 7th Mar 2014
  • Closed: 2nd May 2014
  • Consultations and responses
  • 4 Associated documents
Storengy is developing the Stublach gas storage facility in Cheshire. Phase 1 of this development has a minor facility exemption (MFE) from negotiated third party access (nTPA) arrangements. Storengy has applied for an MFE for phase 2 of the Stublach gas...

  • Published: 8th Mar 2013
  • Decisions
  • 1 Associated documents
This letter sets out Ofgem’s final decision regarding GLNG’s application for an exemption from regulated third party access (rTPA) for Isle of Grain Phase 4.

  • Published: 13th Nov 2012
  • Closed: 4th Jan 2013
  • Consultations and responses
  • 7 Associated documents
This is a consultation on our initial view to grant National Grid LNG an exemption from third party access requirements at the Isle of Grain LNG terminal.

  • Published: 24th Feb 2011
  • Decisions
  • 3 Associated documents
This letter approves the access rules submitted by BritNed Development Limited (BritNed) to Ofgem on 05 January 2011.

  • Published: 26th May 2010
  • Decisions
  • 1 Associated documents
In Dec 09 Ofgem published a consultation document setting out its initial view that a TPA exemption should be granted for the proposed Hill Top Farm storage facility. This letter sets out Ofgem’s final view and decision on the application.