ECONOMY

‘No rush’ to sell stake in Hellenic Petroleum

no-rush-to-sell-stake-in-hellenic-petroleum

The decisions on the privatization of Hellenic Petroleum (ELPE) have been postponed until after the elections, it has emerged from informal statements on the issue by Energy Minister Giorgos Stathakis as well as the estimates of the oil group’s officials. This follows last week’s failed effort to concede a 50.1 percent stake in the group.

“There is no rush, we will begin an open debate with the [country’s] creditors and the main stakeholder in the company from scratch, so as to map out the next steps,” Stathakis stated on the sidelines of Tuesday’s ceremony for the signing of the concession contracts for two blocks in the Ionian Sea regarding hydrocarbon surveying and utilization rights.

The minister ruled out the possibility of a reduction of the state’s holding in ELPE through the stock market, but he said this could be possible via a new tender with new terms, implying that this will factor in the results of last week’s failed tender and the causes for the lack of bids. He even left open the possibility that ELPE may not change hands after all if the state replaces the 500 million euros expected from the stake’s concession through other measures.