Directorate – General for Energy has confirmed the priority of the geographical extension of the Single Day-ahead Coupling (SDAC) through the continuation of the market coupling project DE-AT-PL-4MMC (Interim Coupling Project)

Thus the European Commission has supported the implementation of the Interim Coupling Project which is of huge importance to Bulgaria

On 22.09.2020 the National Regulatory Authorities (NRAs) from Austria, Germany, Poland and the 4M Market Coupling (4M MC) countries, namely the Czech Republic, Hungary, Romania and Slovakia received the guidance from the European Commission (DG ENER) for the Nominated Electricity Market Operators (NEMOs) and Transmission System Operators (TSOs) participating in the DE-AT-PL-4M MC Project (also known as the “Interim Coupling Project” or “ICP”) which sets priority to timely implement the ICP solution. This guidance was requested by the respective National Regulatory Authorities after several months of discussions, as in Q1 2020 local implementation bottlenecks have been identified by several project parties. These bottlenecks are due to interdependencies between ongoing parallel projects such as CORE FB MC, Allegro, NorNed, Polish MNA, resulting in a delay of Interim Coupling implementation activities.

DG ENER considers a sequential implementation of the ICP and CORE Flow Based Market Coupling (Core FB MC) projects as the best way forward, since the ICP will facilitate Single Day-Ahead coupling and notably the geographical extension to all EU borders and the Bulgarian-Romanian border in particular.

Moreover, DG ENER communicated that the Interim Coupling Project will bring the added value in ensuring that Central Eastern European countries will not remain isolated, even if further delays to CORE FB implementation were to occur.

Given the guidance, the current estimated go-live of the ICP is April 2021.

Setting the project DE-AT-PL-4MMC (Interim Coupling) in the Guidance of the European Commission as a priority is a prerequisite for implementation of the project for coupling of the Day-ahead markets on the Bulgarian-Romanian border. The ICP implementation term stipulated in the EC guidance, despite the delay of about 6 months compared to the initially declared term, provides security to the Bulgarian party with respect to further planning of the project on the Bulgarian-Romanian border on which IBEX, ESO, OPCOM and Transelectrica are working and which will enable the long awaited accession of the Bulgarian Day-ahead electricity market to SDAC. The initial plan to successfully complete the implementation of the project on the Bulgarian-Romanian border within three months after the go-live of ICP remains.  

Guidance of the European Commission on the continuation of the DE-AT-PL-4M MC (Interim Coupling) Project can be consulted here.