The European Commission today announced the arrangements it will apply during May and June 2013 to formally close the second trading period, which ended in 2012. These arrangements are necessary because, under the EU ETS Directive, allowances valid for the second trading period are not valid for the third trading period.
The arrangements will apply from 1 May, when the 2012 compliance cycle has ended, until such time as allowances held in users' accounts that are valid for the second trading period will be replaced by allowances valid for the third trading period ('banking'), no later than the end of June.
From 1 May onwards:
As of 8 May, the functionality for operators to surrender allowances valid for the third trading period will be active.
By the end of June, all allowances valid for the second trading period held in users' accounts in the Union Registry will be automatically replaced by allowances valid for the third trading period. Users' accounts are operator holding accounts, aircraft operator holding accounts, person holding accounts and trading accounts held by users. Allowances in other accounts, including accounts held by Member States, will be deleted in early May.
While the exact date for banking is still to be determined, it will necessitate the closure of the Union Registry for a maximum of five consecutive working days. To minimise the impact both on users and the daily operations of the carbon market, the Commission has requested information through an open letter to the International Emissions Trading Association and several exchanges. The exact period during which banking will take place, as well as any change to the duration of the closure should it become necessary, will be communicated on this website not later than end of April.
Until the start of the banking process in June, transfers of allowances valid for the second trading period will remain possible. At the end of the banking process, the Union Registry will contain no more allowances valid for the second trading period.