BUSINESS

Offsetting measures for lignite workers

CHRYSSA LIAGGOU

TAGS: Energy

During a visit to Ptolemaida, northwestern Greece, over the weekend, Energy Minister Kostis Hatzidakis announced a number of measures to ease the blow to the region from the withdrawal of lignite-fueled power production units.

Those measures include investments in photovoltaics in Western Macedonia, the declaration of lignite-producing areas as special tax zones, incentives such as heating bonuses and a special tax status for those who lose their job until they find a new one.

Hatzidakis laid emphasis on the swift installation of photovoltaic systems with a capacity of over 2 gigawatts per year by Public Power Corporation and of a photovoltaic park capable of producing 205 MW per year by Hellenic Petroleum on the basis of an agreement with a large German company, which he said will be signed next Monday.

Understanding that the photovoltaic installations cannot cover the thousands of jobs that will be lost at the mines and power plants, Hatzidakis also announced the launch as early as possible of the necessary construction work “so that workers currently employed by subcontractors can find a job without the creation of a transition gap in the broader region.”

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