Domino effect threatens energy market

The considerable deficit created at electricity grid operator DESMIE after the debt left behind by alternative suppliers Energa and Hellas Power when they had their licenses revoked this week is leading to a domino of payment defaults in the electricity market.

Energa and Hellas Power owed 120 million euros to DESMIE, which is now unable to pay private producers of electricity. They in turn are unable to repay their debts to the Public Gas Corporation (DEPA), which supplies them with natural gas for the operation of their plants.

Now DEPA has found itself with a 175-million-euro unpaid debt by its clients and is unable to repay its own suppliers in time, i.e. Russia and Algeria.

The gas corporation, which is at the top of the privatization list, has sent an urgent message to competent ministries and in anticipation of their intervention is preparing to ask its suppliers for an arrangement of its debt. This will, however, lead to the weakening of its bargaining position ahead of talks for the renewal of the supply contract with the Russians, which expires in 2016.

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