- Rigorous testing phases engaged
- An important step towards further European market integration
- Improved price formation and capacity allocation
7 April 2010 – The implementation phase of the Central Western European (CWE) Market Coupling project is entering its final stage. Given the unprecedented complexity of the CWE Market Coupling project, the project partners - power exchanges and Transmission System Operators - are applying very rigorous test processes, in order to deliver the necessary quality within the shortest possible time. Two tests phases are envisaged, namely:
- the Full Integration Tests, aimed to ensure the proper functioning of the production systems in order to obtain a stable operation of the end-to-end process;
- the Full Simulation Tests, aimed to validate final operational readiness. They include a provision of a test environment for market parties.
The Full Integration testing phase started in week 13. During this test some connectivity problems between applications were discovered due to the implementation of a new communication standard. These problems are currently being solved and need rewriting of some parts of the communication codes and some modifications to the systems. The quality of the price coupling solution is not affected by these issues.
As a result, continuation of Full Integration testing is planned from 19 April and the two tests phases should be completed by 25 June. From this date, the project will offer the first simulation tests to market participants; a first simulation session is foreseen between 25 June and 9 July.
As the migration to the production environment would imply a launch date at the end of July, the CWE MC project partners recommend launching after the summer holiday period in order to ensure a seamless transition with the best possible preparedness by both operators and involved market parties.
This would allow for a second simulation session period for market participants between 16 and 25 August; and thus considerably contribute to successful launch – of major importance to the CWE wholesale market. The doubling of the simulation sessions should also contribute to providing flexibility to the market parties in order to adapt their own business processes.
The project partners are confident that the ongoing regulatory approval processes will be concluded within this time schedule.
On this basis, the project partners propose to launch the ATC-based Price Coupling in the CWE region on 7 September 2010, subject to regulatory approval and success of the test and simulation phases.
A CWE MC Launch workshop will take place in June in Düsseldorf; the aim of which is to provide the market players with the necessary operational information to prepare for go-live.
Besides the workshop, all stakeholders will be informed regularly about the progress in this final stage.
ABOUT THE CENTRAL WEST EUROPEAN MARKET COUPLING (CWE MC) - THE COUPLING OF THE BELGIAN, DUTCH, FRENCH, GERMAN AND LUXEMBOURG ELECTRICITY MARKETS
A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between governments, regulators, power exchanges, TSOs and the electricity associations of Belgium, France, Germany, Luxembourg, and the Netherlands, was signed in Luxembourg in June 2007 to couple the electricity markets of the participating countries. The Central West European Market Coupling (CWE MC) establishes a day-ahead price coupling across the region. CWE MC allows more efficient usage of available cross-border capacity and is expected to bring further price harmonization in the region. These aspects are important prerequisites for realization of a single European electricity market. CWE MC will start as coordinated ATC MC (Available Transfer Capacity based Market Coupling) which is the necessary intermediate step towards the final goal of an implicit flow-based allocation of capacity that is expected to further enhance power system security.
The project will deliver an integrated hourly wholesale electricity market price reference and cross-border capacity allocation for approximately 42 % of the electricity consumption in Europe.
The project participants include three power exchanges; Anglo-Dutch APX-ENDEX, Belgian Belpex and German-French EPEX Spot, and seven Transmission System Operators; Amprion, Creos, Elia, EnBW TNG, RTE, TenneT and transpower.
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