Brussels warming to PPC’s confidence over units sale plan

European Commission officials appear to be adopting a more favorable view of the Greek government’s confidence over the success of an upcoming market test to measure the level of investor interest for a baiout-required sale package of main power utility units.

A final decision on the package’s content, until now lignite only, is expected to be reached by October 15, paving the way for the market test. The two sides are believed to be closing in on an agreement for the sale package’s content.

The utility’s Florina and Megalopoli lignite-fred units are seen as certain inclusions, though the considerable number of employees working at the latter unit is a concern. A building permit for the construction of a second unit at the Meliti facility is also a package certainty, while questions linger as to whether the Amynteo facility will be included. Amynteo, based on its current technology, will need to cease operating in two years’ time as a result of environmental factors.

According to certain sources, even if Amynteo is sold, the European Commission does not intend to factor the unit’s lignite capacity into the 40 percent total PPC has agreed to disinvest.

Brussels officials are beginning to see more positively Chinese interest expressed for the PPC unit sale package. In addition, Czech, Polish and Japanese firms are believed to be exploring the possibility of forming associations with Greek partners for the sale, sources informed. If so, such a development would further increase the likelihood of a successful market test.