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André Merlin re-elected as Chairman of ETSO.

Source: RTE 26/06/2003

André MERLIN, Director of RTE and Chairman of the European Energy and Transport Forum, has been re-elected as Chairman of ETSO.

A former student at the French Ecole Polytechnique with a diploma in engineering from the Higher Institute of Electricity Studies, André Merlin has dedicated most of his career to electricity networks, working for Electricité de France before being appointed Director of RTE on 6th May 2000.

The appointment was made in accordance with the provisions of the law of 10th February 2000 relative to the modernization and development of public service electricity. Under the terms of the law, the Director of RTE is appointed by the Minister for Energy for a period of six years, following consultation with CRE.

At the international and European level

André Merlin belongs to the small circle of people who are responsible for electricity transmission systems throughout the world.

A member of the Restricted Committee of the UCTE (Union for the Co-ordination of Transmission of Electricity in Europe), since 2002 he has been Chairman of the International Conference on Large Electric Systems (CIGRE - an association with 8000 members in 50 countries). Prior to taking the chair, he had been the number two with CIGRE.

In 1999, he helped to found the Association of European Transmission System Operators (ETSO). He then took over as Chairman of ETSO on 29th June 2001. ETSO currently brings together some 32 Electricity Transmission System Operators from 17 European countries.

Since its creation, ETSO has worked alongside the European Commission and the Council of European Regulators, with the aim of harmonizing the rules governing access to the major European electricity systems. These systems are crucial to the opening of the internal electricity market.

ETSO, under the leadership of André Merlin, has succeeded in resolving three major issues since 2001:

1 - a European fund has been set up to compensate for international transits between system operators, thereby avoiding successive levies at borders,

2 - a specific infrastructure has been set up for passing information between TSOs, enabling better management of bottlenecks (or congestion) at international electricity interconnection points,

3 - work has been carried out to examine and implement market mechanism-based methods for allocating exchange capacities at borders between Member States.

With ETSO's help, electricity transmission system operators have now become undisputed players in the European electricity industry.

Since 21st November 2001, André Merlin has been Chairman of the French Higher Institute of Electricity Association (SUPELEC). In October 2002, he was appointed Chairman of the European Energy and Transport Forum, an advisory committee created under the aegis of the Vice-President of the European Commission Loyola de Palacio, with the aim of issuing opinions on draft communications or directives in the fields of land, sea and air transportation, as well as energy (electricity, gas, coal, fuel-oil). André Merlin has received the Légion d'Honneur and the Médaille Blondel (awarded by the French Society of Electric and Electronic Engineers). He is also a Fellow of the United States Institute of Electric and Electronic Engineers, and an emeritus member of CIGRE. He has published over fifty international papers on the development and operation of electric systems.