DEPA to lower gas prices for industrial firms of all sizes

DEPA, the Public Gas Corporation, is examining a revision to its pricing policy for gas supply to small, medium and large-scale industries, which should lead to a ten percent reduction in January, according to energypress sources.

Until now, the cost of gas supply for companies has been calculated using a formula based on international oil prices. The new pricing method to be implemented will be detached from oil market price levels, and, instead, will set gas prices in accordance with DEPA’s purchase-level costs from its suppliers.

Besides experiencing an immediate energy cost reduction as a result of DEPA’s new pricing policy, companies will also be protected from any future rebound in international oil prices.

DEPA’s new pricing policy comes following a government call for full utilization of any available leeway for energy cost reductions to companies. Industrial representatives have applied persistent pressure for respite to enterprises burdened by high energy costs, arguing that the competitiveness of Greece’s industrial sector will be boosted.

In other initiatives, the Finance Ministry, the main shareholder at PPC, the Public Power Corporation, has taken measures to reduce the cost of electricity for industrial companies, while gas auctions have been introduced for large-scale industrial companies. Also, a “disruption management” plan, enabling energy cost savings for major-scale industry in exchange for a reduction in energy consumption whenever required by the system, if overloaded, is being prepared.

“These are all positive moves but come after Greek production has been burdened by extreme energy costs, as a result, on the one hand, of gas and petrol overtaxing, and on the other, high surcharges levied for network use, renewable energy sources (RES) development, and so on,” an industrial sector authority told energypress.

The authority referred to a recent study conducted by strategic consulting firm Roland Berger on behalf of EVIKEN, the Association of Industrial Energy Consumers. Besides pointing out that energy-intensive industrial companies in Greece are being charged one of the highest electricity rates in Europe, the study’s findings also noted that EU member states have taken measures to support their respective industrial sectors. The Greek government, an exception, has been slow to act in this department, the study noted.