COVID-19: Suspension of EFR Process, Supplier Charges and more

Mark BygravesAn updated message from Mark Bygraves, CEO:

‘I wrote to you yesterday with details of what we could do, that’s in our control, to ease some of the pressure you are currently facing. I would like to thank you for the responses we have received so far. Please do continue to contact us.

Today the Performance Assurance Board (PAB) met and considered a number of proposals we made in response to the current COVID-19 pandemic, aimed at reducing operational burden on BSC Parties. More details will be published in Newscast on Monday (sign up to Newscast), but the key decisions made by the PAB were:

Suspensions

Error and Failure Resolution (EFR) process

  • The current triggers for EFR (such as the result of BSC Audit issues and as a result of poor performance against the 97% and 99% standards) will be suspended.
  • Existing EFR plans will be placed on hold, unless the Supplier or Supplier Agent responsible for the plan advises Elexon that they would like to continue tracking against the plan.
  • PAB escalation for missed milestones is suspended.

Supplier Charges

  • Supplier Charges are liquidated damages that Suppliers incur if they fail to meet certain performance levels. They compensate Parties disadvantaged by those who aren’t meeting defined Standards and are one of the remedial Performance Assurance Techniques deployed by the PAB.
  • December 2019 Supplier Charges (approved by the PAB last week ex-committee) will be issued to Parties in the next few days for payment in line with the normal timetable.
  • Subject to Elexon finding a technical solution the January 2020 and February 2020 Supplier Charges will be calculated as normal, but will not be payable by Parties until a later date (to be determined). This is aimed at assisting Suppliers’ cashflow.
  • From March 2020 until there are further government announcements, Elexon will seek to coordinate a blanket “Force Majeure” application on behalf of all Suppliers to set their Supplier Charges to zero. This is subject to Elexon finding a technical solution to do this.
  • We will contact all Suppliers regarding the approach once it has been agreed. However, we may need your consent to proceed with the application on your behalf.

Technical Assurance visits

  • We are suspending site visits by the Technical Assurance Agent (TAA) with immediate effect.

Postponement/delay

Technical Assurance of Performance Assurance Party (TAPAP) checks

  • TAPAP Checks for Risk 11, Unmetered Supplies which were originally due to take place April – June 2020 will now be postponed to allow the selected Parties to concentrate on business as usual critical work.

BSC Audit

  • The 2019/2020 BSC Audit is nearly completed and will be finalised remotely. It is likely that there will be a delay to the final audit report so businesses can prioritise critical business as usual work.
  • The BSC Auditor, Elexon and the PAB will consider the current difficulties and restrictions when agreeing the audit scope for the 2020/2021 audit.

Ongoing review

Performance Assurance Techniques

Other techniques (such as Peer Comparison and education) will be reviewed to consider the COVID-19 issue and the PAB will make further decisions on these at its April meeting, if required.

Once again I would like to reassure that we will continue to look at ways to support you during this time and you can continue to contact me directly at [email protected], via your dedicated OSM or by emailing [email protected].’

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