BRUSSELS, March 25 (UPI) -- European lawmakers and member states made a series of concessions on a long-delayed package to liberalize the gas and electricity market.
The compromise gives national companies the right to maintain control over their gas and electricity transmission systems in exchange for more transparency and oversight, the Financial Times reports.
In exchange, lawmakers gave consumers the right to seek more competitive prices, access to better metering technology and reductions for economically challenged customers.
"It is essential for all other energy policies -- security of supply, the fight against climate change, the development of renewable energy. For all these, we need a competitive market," European energy spokesman Ferran Tarradellas said.
The European Commission said the measure paved the way for a wide range of provisions, from clean-energy technology to improved electricity grids.
The European Parliament is scheduled to vote on the issue before June.