PPC uses imports to cover demand

The partial rather than complete lifting of distortions in the electricity market has worked in favor of imports and has not produced an increase in lignite use, as expected, the official data of the Public Power Corporation and the Hellenic Electricity Market Operator (LAGIE) showed for 2014 and the first quarter of 2015.

This has left some multimillion-euro investments inactive and undermines the long-term security of the country’s electricity system.

The 8.4 percent year-on-year increase in demand for electricity during the first three months of 2015 was 24 percent covered by imports, while lignite power output dropped 21.6 percent in the same period, taking the fuel’s share in the total production of electricity to just 34 percent from an average of 45 percent in previous years.

PPC reduced the production of power not only from natural gas plants but also from lignite units in order to reduce its operating costs, opting instead for more imports.

The output of natural gas-powered electricity plants accounted for 11 percent of the fuel mix used, with renewable energy sources contributing about 10 percent, according to LAGIE data.

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