Proposed Amendments to Thailand's Energy Industry Act: New Regulations for Emerging Businesses and Changes to the Licensing Regime Appear to be Forthcoming
The Energy Industry Act 2007 (the "EIA") is the principal legislation governing electricity, natural gas, and energy network systems in Thailand. Since its launch in December 2007, the EIA has been the basis for the Energy Regulatory Commission (the “ERC”) enacting subordinate regulations to respond to market developments in the energy sector. Pursuant to the EIA, the ERC has adopted regulations that have permitted greater private investment in power generation capacity, including introducing a licensing scheme that allows for the private selling of electricity. This licensing scheme has been foundational in permitting the development of Thailand’s rooftop solar market in the commercial and industrial (C&I) sectors. Nevertheless, new energy solutions emerging due to technological developments and lower costs, as well as practical challenges on the current supervision of the Thai energy sector have created the impetus to update the EIA, which underpins the ERC's supervisory direction.