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DE-AT-PL-4M MC

The goal of DE-AT-PL-4M MC (Interim Coupling) project is to implement day-ahead market coupling based on the Net Transmission Capacity ('NTC') method along the border of two currently running day-ahead market coupling projects - 4M Market Coupling ('4M MC') and Multi-Regional Coupling ('MRC'), which includes borders between the following EU Member States: Austria, the Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, Poland, and Slovakia. At present, explicit allocation of cross-border capacities is implemented on these borders.

This NTC-based market coupling represents a major step towards the timely achievement of the Single Day-Ahead Coupling ('SDAC') in the EU before the introduction of FB method, which is the target model for day-ahead market coupling set out in the Commission Regulation 2015/1222 establishing a guideline on capacity allocation and congestion management ('CACM Regulation'). The advantage of this project is the gradual transition to implicit allocation on the borders between MRC and 4M MC projects.

 

NTC Capacity Calculation Method

The NTC method represents a calculation of transmission capacity based on the maximum amount of electricity that can be transferred between bidding zones without compromising the security of both systems and respecting some technical uncertainties regarding future network conditions. These physical transmission constraints need to be transformed into business constraints called Net Transmission Capacity ('NTC').

 

History of the project

Although there had been many discussions about potential project implementation in the past, the project was always rejected for lack of resources.

Following a request from the regulatory authorities of Germany, Austria, Poland and 4M MC countries, a discussion on the feasibility of market coupling using the NTC capacity calculation method currently used in MRC and 4M MC took place at a trilateral meeting in Budapest in October 2018.

Based on the requirement to investigate the possibility of project implementation, an initial version of the roadmap for implementation of the DE-AT-PL-4M MC project was presented in November 2018, linked with the roadmap of the Core FB MC project.

In December 2018, the DE-AT-PL-4M MC project was approved and successfully launched.

In June 2019, project participants successfully finalized the High-Level Market Design to be implemented, a document describing the entire normal business process for coupling day-ahead markets including issues such as shipping arrangements, congestion income collection and aggregation, IT infrastructure and technical profiles topology, etc.

Several important milestones need to be reached before the project go-live:

  • change of day-ahead market gate closure time from 11:00 to 12:00 - includes system development, regulatory approvals and timely communication to market participants,
  • internal system development and modification of existing procedures,
  • isolated local functionality tests of individual project sides,
  • testing within DE-AT-PL-4M MC parties - integration tests between TSOs and NEMOs systems, and
  • joint Final Testing - Unified testing of all systems and procedures across the MRC-4M MC market coupling.

In December 2019, project participants announced the finalization of the design and launch of the implementation of local IT solutions.

  • Based on the updated planning, the joint regional testing phase of the project is expected to start at the end of January 2021, while tests with market participants (Member Tests) are now planned in the second half of April 2021 (2 weeks are allocated for this activity in the project roadmap).
  • The new go-live window of the project is foreseen for May 2021.