Wednesday Jul 30, 2014 Search
Weather | Athens
31o C
24o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
Offsetting measures as gas market opens up

By Chryssa Liaggou

The Public Gas Corporation (DEPA) is processing a plan to offset the losses of the local gas supply corporations, known as EPAs, in the natural gas retail market, in cooperation with Shell and ENI, the other main stakeholders in the three EPAs in Athens, Thessaly and Thessaloniki.

This plan provides for lengthening of the supply permits as well as the expansion of the geographical areas in which the companies can operate. The aim is to make this plan the main pillar of the bill on the natural gas retail market’s liberalization, which according to the country’s agreement with its creditors should have been passed into law by the end of June.

The Environment and Energy Ministry attributes the delay to the demanding issue of the bill concerning the Public Power Corporation’s part-privatization. Ministry sources say there is no problem with the country’s creditors regarding that delay and that the bill will be submitted to Parliament in the next few days.

One of the crucial issues which the bill must address concerns the offsetting benefits to investors ENI and Shell as well as DEPA, which holds a 51 percent stake in each EPA, as they will lose the exclusive right to supply and transmit natural gas even though this had been secured for a 30-year period with the consent of the European Commission in 2000 (when they entered the market), in an exception to European Union rules.

The investors have asked Athens and the European competition authorities for a period of adjustment to the new status and for a partial offsetting of losses so as to spare the state from a court battle for damages based on Athens forfeiting the contract signed for a 30-year exclusivity.

The lengthening of the permits to supply gas along with the expansion of the three EPAs’ geographical areas of activity appear to have met with the agreement of all private investors. In practice this means that the supply market will open up and consumers will be able to choose their suppliers from between any new companies that enter the market and the existing EPAs, which in the meantime will have proceeded to the separation of their two main activities (supply and transmission). According to the government’s agreement with its creditors, this separation must be completed during the year’s last quarter.

The expansion of the geographical area permits of each EPA, proposed by DEPA for transmission activity, will initially open up the regions of Central Macedonia and Eastern Macedonia and Thrace to the Thessaly and Thessaloniki EPAs, and the region of Central Greece and Evia to the Attica EPA. DEPA had planned for an expansion to those three new regions, but the tenders to set up new EPAs there failed to attract the interest of investors.

From October 1 the government has also undertaken a commitment to introduce regulations for the gradual deregulation of all gas customers, ahead of January 1, 2017, when all domestic clients of the three EPAs have to be freed up – i.e. contracts with the existing gas suppliers will not be binding for consumers should they wish to opt out.

The issue of the changes implemented to the natural gas retail market was the main point of a speech by DEPA chief executive officer Spyros Paleoyiannis on Thursday at a conference organized in Athens by The Economist. Addressing the event, he stressed the market share loss that DEPA is bound to incur.

ekathimerini.com , Friday Jul 11, 2014 (22:11)  
Deals reached for twin plot on Afandou, for 42 million
More delays and red tape for companies’ tax rebates
Greek shipowners continue to invest in fleet renewal
Trainose sale is not on track
Troika review in Athens unaffected by Paris meeting
A meeting between troika and Greek government officials in Paris at the beginning of September does not mean that representatives of Greece’s lenders will not then travel to Athens to carry ...
Soldiers set to sue over wages
Members of the armed forces and emergency services look set to take legal action to have their wages restored to pre-2012 levels after the government suggested it would not raise their pay t...
Inside News
VOLLEYBALL
Volleyball national team second in European League
Much as the national volleyball team tried to repeat in the finals of the European League the feat it had achieved in the semifinals, it failed to overturn the advantage Montenegro had got f...
SOCCER
Ranieri says he has little to change in Greek national team
The Hellenic Football Federation (EPO) presented Claudio Ranieri as the new Greece coach for the next couple of years, after the Italian manager signed his contract in Athens on Friday. “I l...
Inside Sports
COMMENTARY
Through insecurity comes optimism
Prime Minister Antonis Samaras recently expressed his optimism regarding the quota of 180 Parliamentary deputies required for the election of Greece’s next president, in order for the countr...
EDITORIAL
Futile policy
The policy that Israel has been pursuing vis-a-vis the Palestinians is wrong and futile. Current tactics have failed to resolve the security issue and, at the same time, they are rapidly dra...
Inside Comment
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
 RECENT NEWS
1. Deals reached for twin plot on Afandou, for 42 million
2. More delays and red tape for companies’ tax rebates
3. Greek shipowners continue to invest in fleet renewal
4. Trainose sale is not on track
5. Industry asks for gov’t intervention
6. Troika review in Athens unaffected by Paris meeting
more news
Today
This Week
1. Greece names fifth privatization agency chief in four years
2. Archaeological council bans international climbers' gathering at Meteora
3. World’s largest solar boat on Greek mission
4. Venizelos to meet Nimetz in Athens
5. Tsipras discusses Cyprus with Anastasiades in Athens
6. More than 120,000 households to receive special benefit
Today
This Week
1. Unequal after death
2. Greek sovereign debt at 174.1 percent of GDP in first quarter
3. Hedge fund Dromeus turns Greek tragedy to triumph with 160 pct gain
4. Quadriplegic woman on life support 'dies due to unpaid power bills'
5. Front-line threats
6. Defense Minister Avramopoulos to represent Greece at European Commission
   Find us ...
  ... on
Twitter
     ... on Facebook   
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright © 2014, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.