Liberalized Market Prices

To compare the prices of electricity and natural gas commercial offers, see ERSE's energy price simulator.

The differences between the regulated and the liberalized markets in the consumers’ total invoice are as follows:

All consumers pay the network access tariff, regardless of whether they are in the regulated market or in the liberalized market. Access tariffs reflect the cost of infrastructures and all services used by all consumers in a collective manner. This tariff results from the sum of the global technical system operation tariff, the transmission network tariff, and the distribution network tariffs. ERSE defines all these tariffs.

Consumers, who are still in the regulated market pay the energy tariff and the supply tariff, set by ERSE. In the liberalized market, each supplier defines freely the corresponding price, being in competition with other suppliers.

The government is responsible for defining VAT and other taxes, which are the same across the regulated and the liberalized market.

To know more about the commercial offers in the liberalized market you can consult the Bulletin for the electricity retail offers.

Every six months, ERSE publishes information (PT) comparing energy prices in Portugal with other European Union countries' prices.

 

Tariffs and Regulated Prices

Annually, ERSE approves tariffs and prices for electricity, valid for a calendar year (January to December). Exceptionally ERSE can approve tariffs and regulated prices for a different timeline.

ERSE defines 'tariffs and regulated prices' as:

  • Tariffs: regulated tariffs that reflect all the costs of each regulated activity. For these, ERSE defines the allowed revenues; all end-user consumers, both in the regulated and liberalized market, pay the access tariffs.
  • Prices: prices of regulated services are associated with mandatory services (for example: restoration of power supply or extraordinary meter readings) and are paid only by consumers who request them.

The Tariff Regulation, approved by ERSE, defines the methodology to determine the allowed revenues, the tariff methodology, and the tariff structure.

2024 Annual Setting

ERSE approves the tariffs and prices for 2024 by means of Directive no. 10/2024, of 7 of February, published in Diário da República.

The setting is based on the document "Tariffs and prices for electricity and other services in 2024", which includes four annexes that analyse in more detail the regulated activities' allowed revenues, electricity demand, the economic performance of the regulated companies and the tariff structure.

The Opinion of the Tariff Council and ERSE's comments on that Opinion are also available.

Tariffs and Prices 2024

Rules for distributing the financing of the social tariff

Under the terms of the law, the financing of the costs of the social tariff is provided by producers and, from 18 November 2023, by suppliers and other agents in the consumption function, as a result of the publication of Decree-Law 104/2023 of 17 November. ERSE published Directive no. 1/2024, of 9 January, on the distribution of this funding between producers until 17 November 2023, and a public consultation is planned on the distribution of funding from 18 November 2023 until the end of 2024.

Exceptional tariff setting 

ERSE Directive no. 5/2024 of 15 May, pending publication in the Diário da República, exceptionally sets electricity tariffs and prices for the period from June to December 2024, taking into account the parameters for their definition for the 2022-2025 regulation period.

This Directive partially amends Directive 10/2024, published in Diário da República on 7 February 2024, which approved the tariffs and prices for electricity and other services in 2024, in force since 1 January 2024.

The decision is based on the document "Tariffs and Prices for Electricity from June to December 2024 - Exceptional decision". The Tariff Council's Opinion and ERSE's comments on that Opinion are also available.

Social tariff

Economically vulnerable consumers with a contracted power up to 6.9 kVA are entitled to a social tariff discount to be reflected in the network access tariff. This discount is identical across the regulated market and the liberalized market.

For consumers in the liberalized market, ERSE defines the social tariff discount applied to the network access tariff. When the consumer is entitled to the social tariff, the supplier must apply the discount to the final consumer prices. 

For consumers who are still in the regulated market, ERSE defines an end-user social tariff, applied by the supplier of last resort (SLR).

ERSE has made available a calculator to check the social tariff discount on consumers' energy invoices.

See these FAQs for more information on the social tariff.

The General Directorate of Energy and Geology (DGEG) is responsible for identifying the beneficiaries of the social tariff. If you have any questions or complaints about the social tariff entitlement, please contact DGEG.

 

 

Time Periods

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  • Super vazio
  • Vazio normal
  • Cheias
  • Ponta

The price of electricity varies according to the time of day at which consumption takes place.

The hourly period corresponds to the way electricity consumption is distributed over the 24 hours of each day and the 7 days of the week.

The hourly periods for the delivery of electricity, set out in the ERSE´s Tariff Code, in Articles 34 for mainland Portugal and Article 40 for the Autonomous Regions, are as follows:

  • Peak: applicable to consumers at all voltage levels and to normal low voltage (BTN) consumers on a three-hour tariff. It corresponds to the period when the price of energy is highest.
  • Mid-Peak: applies to consumers at all voltage levels and to BTN consumers on the three- and two-hour tariff.
  • Off-Peak: applies to consumers at all voltage levels and to BTN consumers on the three- or two-hour tariff. It corresponds to the period when the price of energy is lowest.
  • Super off-peak: applicable to consumers connected to special low voltage (SLV), medium voltage (MV), high voltage (HV), and very high voltage (VHV).

In addition to the hourly periods, there are also two cycles: daily cycle (the hourly periods are the same every day of the year) and weekly cycle (the hourly periods differ between weekdays and weekends).

For each cycle, there is a summer and winter timetable. The time periods in mainland Portugal and the Autonomous Regions are determined by the specific electrical characteristics of each region, namely the evolution of its energy load diagram.

A normal LV electricity consumer (contracted power less than or equal to 41.4 kVA) can choose between 3 tariff options. Each period has different energy prices:

  • Tri-hourly: 3 periods during the day (peak hours, mid-peak hours, and off-peak hours)
  • Bi-hourly: 2 periods during the day (off-peak and peak hours)
  • Simple: 1 single period during the day, with no energy price differentiation.

For more information see ERSE's energy price simulator.