The Code of Good Administrative Behaviour provides that an answer to a question should be provided within 15 working days. However, if the question is complex and requires for instance further examination or a consultation with other parties, then a holding reply should be sent. The code provides, in particular, that in case of requests for already published documents, the person making the enquiry should be directed to the place where the document is freely accessible. The code also draws attention to correspondence which can reasonably be regarded as improper, for example, because it is repetitive, abusive and/or pointless. Furthermore, the code stipulates that measures taken should be proportional to the aim pursued. The application of the code should never lead to imposition of administrative of budgetary burden out of proportion to the benefit.
The Agency has very limited resources but it receives an extremely high number of questions every month. Therefore, it has set up a policy, in line with the Code of the Good Administrative Behaviour, to deal with the questions in a consistent and im-partial way.
Normally, the Agency aims to reply within 15 working days from the date of the receipt of the question. An automatic reply which constitutes the holding reply as mentioned in the code is, however, sent to all questions that the Agency receives. This is because many questions that the Agency receives are of complex nature.
Also, the Agency aims at ensuring a harmonised application of the regulation in all Member States. Hence, the Agency normally initiates a discussion with all NRAs in order to find a common understanding in order to reply to the question. The discussion may take some time, but the consultation process guarantees that all NRAs in all 28 Member States will have the same understanding and interpretation of the same matter. This, on the other hand, will ensure a harmonised enforcement of REMIT and the implementing regulation throughout the Union.
Many questions that the Agency receives concern documentation which is already published. Often questions are also repetitive and an answer has already been provided for instance in the Agency's Q&A or FAQ documents. The Agency estimates that more than half of the incoming queries received on a weekly basis are already addressed by the existing documentation and are, thus, repetitive. As of 1 May 2016, the Agency will no longer follow up these questions individually, and the Agency considers the automatic reply, which is referring to the relevant documentation , as an answer to the question. The stakeholder can then find all relevant information by reading the already sent holding reply which contains a comprehensive list of all publicly available documentation on REMIT implementation.
In case a query is not addressed by the existing documentation, the Agency will reply to it on a one to one basis depend-ing on the urgency and the scope of the queries received.
Despite the Agency's effort to manage stakeholder queries, it should be stressed that the Agency cannot replace the stakehoders' own compliance efforts.
Code of Good Administrative Behaviour: