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EMC recommends you also consider the following issues when making your choice.
You may need some appropriate in-house expertise to deal with the issues relating to direct participation in the wholesale electricity market. This person, or team of people, should be able to understand the Market Rules and the Electricity Act and be prepared to actively participate in the market via information forums and consultation. As a direct market consumer, you will also connect to EMC's Trading Website, which allows you to view a variety of market information including real-time prices and dispatch.
You must work with EMC to establish a new bill settlement process within your company. The settlement process with EMC is different from the process you currently have with SP Services or other retailer (where you pay your bill each month). As a direct market consumer, EMC will issue an itemised preliminary settlement statement on D+6 business days (D equals the trading day). On D+10 business days, EMC will issue the final statement and you have until day D+20 (calendar days) to pay EMC.
As a direct market consumer, you will be charged the electricity price (USEP) per MWh consumed as well as other charges such as charges for reserve/ancillary services and EMC and PSO administration fees. Some of these additional charges can vary significantly each month.
The wholesale electricity market is like any other commodity market whereby all participating parties are obliged to uphold the financial integrity of the market. In practice, this means that a default in payment by one party (that cannot be recovered fully using the defaulting party's security cover) will be recovered from the remaining non-defaulting market participants, including direct market consumers. The monies to be recovered are apportioned based on the individual traded value of each market participant. As this can vary substantially depending on the outstanding amount to be recovered, it is not possible to predict these charges. It is important that you are aware of this obligation.
As a direct market consumer, you are obliged to play by the Market Rules. These rules frame the market and act as a contract between you and EMC. Like any contract, there are processes in place to penalise any party that breaches these rules. There is also a dispute and compensation resolution process to address any grievances faced by parties to the rules.
As well as abiding by your many rule obligations, you also have a role in helping to evolve an efficient and competitive wholesale market. A body called the Rules Change Panel considers rule changes proposed by market participants. You must be aware of this process as rule changes proposed by other parties might (either directly or indirectly) affect you.