The aim of the new procedure, whereby pre-selected candidates contribute to drafting the tender terms, is to speed up deployment, encourage competition and reduce costs.
Candidates will be pre-selected according to financial and technical criteria. Interested companies will have at least 30 days in which to apply and, as before, energy regulator CRE will analyse the submissions and advise the minister.
At least three candidates must be selected, though the minister can still go ahead with fewer as long as the candidates have passed the selection criteria.
The minister will then enter into dialogue with the selected candidates to define the tender terms, including the characteristics of the project and the criteria for selecting a winner, according to a set timetable.
Once the final terms are published, invited candidates will have at least six months to apply.