BUSINESS

Mytilineos concerned about PPC, may opt out of power unit tender

CHRYSSA LIAGGOU

Evangelos Mytilineos said the government ‘is continuing with the construction of a plant that won’t operate – a 1.5-billion-euro investment,’ referring to the fifth PPC unit being constructed at Ptolemaida.

TAGS: Energy, Privatizations

Mytilineos group head Evangelos Mytilineos has expressed concern over the future of Public Power Corporation, suggesting his company could withdraw from the tender for PPC’s lignite-powered units.

Addressing the listed group’s annual general meeting on Monday, Mytilineos made no secret of his worries about the way things are going at the country’s biggest utility and the potential impact on the entire economy, calling for decisions based on cross-party consensus, while asking all parties to publicize their plans for PPC.

“I see a government that is doing nothing for PPC, as if there were no problems. It is continuing with the construction of a plant that won’t operate – a 1.5-billion-euro investment,” he stated referring to the fifth unit being constructed at Ptolemaida – “while we are building a plant for 300 million euros.” He added that “we have also heard the main opposition say it will implement radical solutions, without saying what they would be.”

The businessman further expressed concern over PPC’s carbon dioxide exposure, and clearly pointed to the possibility that his group might withdraw from the bidding for PPC’s plants at Meliti and Megalopoli: “The lignite plants have a value only for the industries that have a carbon offset. Thus there should be a discussion with PPC and energy-intensive industries so that a conclusion can be reached.”

Mytilineos also kept some distance from the privatization of Public Gas Corporation (DEPA): He said the project has suffered great delays and referred to distortions due to DEPA’s gas procurement contracts being pegged to the price of oil, which reduce the utility’s value. He went on to note that the Mytilineos group already has a 30 percent share in the natural gas market, while DEPA’s share has dropped to 50 percent, so the Competition Commission would be unlikely to approve a concentration of 80 percent. However, he said the interest in Athens Gas Corporation was a different matter.

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