Brussels suspicious over PPC role in new CAT system delay

A series of new delays and problems holding back the implementation of local electricity market measures is raising the level of suspicion felt by the country’s lenders, including the European Commission, against Greece, making it difficult for the two sides to find common ground on issues, sources in Brussels have told energypress.

Greek electricity market developments are making one step forward and two steps back, European Commission officials believe.

The slow progress being experienced in the establishment and implementation of Greece’s new temporary CAT mechanism, needed to replace the previous mechanism which expired last spring, is expected to leave the market’s producers uncovered until at least early next year, when the new system is seen arriving. This delay has been identified in Brussels as the latest noteable issue causing irregularities.

Electricity suppliers, especially the main power utility PPC – as the dominant retail player – are continuing to collect an accumulating related surcharge that is not being relayed to producers as a result of the absence of the new CAT mechanism.

Electricity producers, primarily PPC, collected approximately 15 million euros per month through the old CAT mechanism.

Whether coincidental or not, this surcharge intended for electricity producers, but whose lions share is kept by PPC, the main retailer, has helped offset losses incurred by the utility through the NOME auctions, introduced last October to provide third parties with access to PPC’s low-cost lignite and hydropower sources.

This detail has not gone by unnoticed, raising suspicions concerning various other pending electricity market measures, Brussels sources informed.