ECONOMY

Words about PPC denied

The head of Greece’s Energy Regulatory Authority (RAE), Prof. Pantelis Kapros, yesterday protested in a letter to Kathimerini that the paper had inaccurately reported his critical comments on Wednesday about the government’s will to promote the effective deregulation of the electric power industry, which has stalled since being formally put into place in February 2001. In his opening speech on the second day of the conference «Energy and Development 2002,» recorded by audiovisual means, Kapros said the deregulation was doomed if the legal framework did not change and dropped clear hints about a political preference in favor of the state-controlled Public Power Corporation (PPC). He said RAE had «unanimously» rejected PPC’s proposals for its accounting separation on the basis of the phases of production, transfer and distribution of electricity because the data it had furnished was bogus. In his letter, Kapros protested that Kathimerini attempted to convey a picture of RAE engaged in polemics against PPC’s management and the government, which he described as misleading. He said the official transcript of his speech distributed to reporters contained neither direct nor indirect references to PPC’s management and the Development Ministry. Moreover, he denied using the term «bogus,» saying his exact wording was «because PPC did not apply the Community Directive which aims to promote the required transparency.» Government sources yesterday expressed vexation about Kapros’s statements, particularly as they came as PPC is preparing to float a second tranche of shares on the bourse next month. They said the government does not intend to subsidize the construction of private power plants and will not go further than guaranteeing the price at which they will be able to sell their production.