PPC sale package offering 40% of lignite capacity being worked on

Two separate sale packages to list 40 percent of main power utility PPC lignite-related capacity are currently being prepared by the utility and Greece’s energy ministry, with respective assistance from two consulting firms, McKinsey, working for PPC, and Lazard, guiding the ministry’s effort.

PPC faces a bailout term requiring it to offer 40 percent of its lignite production capacity for sale to rival companies.

The procedure is complex as the units to be included in the PPC sale package must reflect those to be maintained in the utility’s portfolio in terms of longevity and output. Also, the 40 percent proportion will need to be based on forecasts of PPC’s lignite-fired capacity in 2030, not the utility’s current capacity.

The procedure has been impacted by a major landslide that struck the utility’s Amynteo mine, in northern Greece, last Saturday, a development that has interrupted the region’s mining activities and operation of PPC’s two lignite-fired power stations at Amynteo. Their capacity totals 600 MW. The mine affected by the landslide supplies both these power stations.

The Amynteo mine deposit is believed to possess enough lignite to supply the local grid for a period of between five to ten years, assuming that the exisiting local power production units are upgraded or a new unit is developed, an unlikely prospect.

Authorities are now awaiting the results of a study to determine the lignite deposit quantity that remains retrievable following last weekend’s landslide.

The landslide has increased the likelihood of PPC’s Agios Dimitris facilities, also in the country’s north, being entangled in the bailout-required sale list, a prospect the utility wants to avoid.