The Access to Networks, Infrastructures and Interconnections Code (RARII) is approved by ERSE following article 111 of Decree-Law nº. 62/2020, of 28 August.

RARII establishes, according to objective, transparent and non-discriminatory criteria, the technical and commercial conditions for accessing the gas transmission and distribution networks, the storage facilities, the Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) terminals and the interconnections, briefly mentioned as infrastructures. It includes the rules for access to gas networks by producers of renewable or low carbon gases.

RARII (and its complimentary regulations) implements the European network code on capacity allocation mechanisms in gas transmission systems - Commission Regulation (EU) 2017/459 of 16 March 2017.

  • Access to infrastructure

After establishing the right of access, with the connection of the user’s facilities to the network, the access to infrastructures by the user is formalized with the signing of the following contracts:

    • Contract for the use of LNG terminal
    • Contract for the use of gas underground storage
    • Contract for the use of the transmission network
    • Contract for the use of distribution networks
  • Investments in infrastructures

RARII determines that operators send to ERSE data on investment projects, for oversight and for the purpose of recognition in the asset base and tariff the calculation.

  • Infrastructure capacity

RARII establishes the obligation of infrastructure operators to disclose information on the capacity available for commercial purposes in their infrastructures.

RARII also establishes the rules for capacity allocation in the infrastructures, at entry and exit points of the transmission network, at the LNG terminal and at the gas underground storage. RARII regulates congestion management, namely the respective mechanisms and the use of revenues from capacity allocation.

RARII is complemented by other standards, namely the Manual of Procedures for Access to gas Infrastructures (MPAI), the General Conditions for Infrastructure Use Contracts and the complementary Norms for investment projects and execution reports.

The current RARII was approved by Code no. 407/2021, of 12 May. The previous versions can be consulted in ERSE's normative acts section.

Consolidated version

Other legal instruments

The Access to Networks, Infrastructure and Interconnections Code (RARII) establishes the provisions associated with third-party access to the infrastructures of the National Gas System (SNG), providing for the existence of complementary documents:

  • Manual of Procedures for Access to gas Infrastructures (MPAI)

The subjects that make up the MPAI are established in article 49 of RARII, including the methodologies of the studies for the determination of capacity, the mechanisms of capacity allocation and the mechanisms of congestion resolution in the SNGN infrastructures.

With regard to interconnections, MPAI establishes: (i) capacity allocation mechanisms, pursuant to Commission Regulation (EU) No. 2017/459, of 16 March; (ii) congestion management mechanisms, according to Annex I of Regulation no. 715/2009 of the European Parliament and of the Council, of 13 July 2009, in the wording given by Commission Decision (EU) 2012/490, of 24 August; and (iii) the mechanism for the implicit allocation of capacity at MIBGAS, at the Virtual Interconnection Point.

The transmission system operator shall present a MPAI proposal, in its SNG Global Technical Management activity, in coordination with the operators of the remaining infrastructures of the National Transmission Network, Storage Infrastructures and LNG Terminals (RNTIAT). MPAI is approved by ERSE after public consultation.

The current MPAI was approved by Directive No. 13/2017, of September 21, 2017, and amended by Directive No. 7/2020, of April 21, 2020. The amendment (referring to Procedures 4, 6, 10 and 12) was preceded by a stakeholder consultation (proposed amendment), highlighting the implementation of a mechanism provided for in EU Regulation 715/2009: mechanism coordinated congestion management in natural gas interconnections - Long Term Use-It-Or-Lose-It (LT UIOLI).

The LT UIOLI mechanism on the Portugal-Spain interconnection was subject to consultation by Portuguese (ERSE) and Spanish (CNMC) regulators with stakeholders of the South Gas Regional Initiative, published on the website of the Agency for the Cooperation of Energy Regulators (ACER).

Based on the 6 comments received (EDP, Endesa, Galp, Naturgy, Repsol, Terèga), ERSE drafted a synthesis document of comments that presents and analyzes the contributions received, justifying the option taken in the final decision that approved the new procedures of the MPAI.

Consolidated version 

  • General Conditions for Infrastructure Use Contracts

The General Conditions for Infrastructure Use Contracts are established in accordance with article 10 of RARII, and the respective operators are responsible for proposing the conditions relating to the infrastructures they operate. General Conditions are approved by ERSE after consultation with market agents. The proposal for the General Conditions of the Contract for the Use of Distribution Networks must be prepared jointly by all the distribution network operators operating in the SNGN.

  • Complementary norms for investment projects and execution reports

The complementary norms for data collection on investment projects and the execution reports are established in articles 23 and 25 of RARII, respectively, and operators must provide the information provided in accordance with the formats found there. This provision of information RARII feeds into the recognition of investment projects in the asset base and the calculation of tariffs, for the defined horizon.