PPC chief warns corporation could falter

The part-privatization of public power corporation, PPC, and the staging of NOME-type electricity-sector auctions constitute a hazardous combination that cannot co-exist, PPC’s president and Managing Director, Arthuros Zervos, told an Economist conference in Athens yesterday. The company head also warned that such a pairing of events could lead to PPC’s demise.

Mr. Zervos explained that the 30% sale of PPC’s production and commercial capacity – a part-privatization being referred to as “Little DEI” – and the sale of lignite and hydropower-generated energy to private firms through auctions, would lead to the exploitation of a considerable part of PPC by other firms. He noted that such developments would inevitably lead to the destruction of the country’s largest enterprise.

Based on his warnings, Mr. Zervos requested that RAE, the Regulatory Authority for Energy, take all necessary precautionary measures.

As for the NOME-type auctions, an approach intended to lead to lower-cost energy, the PPC chief told the conference that, if implemented, these would need to be staged in such a way that would not only include total production cost, but other factors as well, such as investment forecasts.

“PPC has asked for guarantees that assure the procedure will prove beneficial for consumers, not just certain private interests,” Mr. Zervos noted, while adding that PPC wanted assurances that the model chosen would not be detrimental to the public power corporation.

During his speech, the PPC president noted that the corporation had invested a total of 4 billion euro over the past four years in all its fields of activity. He described these investments as the largest made in the country during the current recession.