On 24 October 2005, the National Energy Strategy was approved, substituting for the previous 2003 strategy. The strategy defines the major political guidelines and most relevant measures in the energy area, with the following principal objectives:
- To guarantee security of energy supply, by diversifying primary resources and energy services and promoting energy efficiency.
- To stimulate and encourage competition, protecting consumers and promoting corporate competitiveness and efficiency.
- To guarantee the environmental adequacy of the energy process as a whole, reducing its environmental impacts on a local, regional and national level
The major strategic guidelines, established to achieve these three objectives, include the liberalisation of the electricity, gas and fuel markets; creation of a competitive structural framework; growth of renewable energy supply; promotion of energy efficiency; an efficient and environmentally sound public supply of energy; reorganisation of the energy sector tax and incentive systems; energy perspective and innovation; and communication, awareness and assessment of national energy strategy.
The new strategy provides for the restructuring of the energy sector, by expanding the scope of activity of the principal operating companies, for there to be more than one relevant integrated operator in the electricity and natural gas sectors. It also provides for the linkage of the regulated assets in the natural gas sector (reception, transport and storage) with the current electricity grid and transport operator Rede Eléctrica Nacional (REN).