DEPA shifts focus to expansion of Greece’s gas networks

Greater local presence through expansion of the country’s gas networks – medium and low pressure – to be developed in new areas stands as a leading priority for the new leadership at DEPA, the Public Gas Corporation.

This approach was highlighted by Theodoros Kitsakos, DEPA’s recently appointed chief executive officer, during his first session with media yesterday. He assumed his post slightly over a month ago.

The new DEPA boss’s intention to focus on the local market signals a change of strategy for the corporation following greater emphasis placed on major projects abroad. Expansion of the local natural gas networks and gas usage, a basic duty for the corporation, has been “left behind”, Kitsakos noted.

“Existing gas pipelines cannot sit unitilized at the peripheries of mainland cities simply because city networks have not been developed,” the DEPA boss remarked.

DEPA officials have already come into contact with local authorities in western Greece, the mainland, and eastern Macedonia, Greek regions deemed as being most ripe for gas network development. Talks are also being held with authorities representing other areas. The islands will be looked at as a second stage.

According to the new DEPA strategy, network expansion work will not be offered through tenders but partnerships with exisiting EPA gas supply companies and regional authorities.

The effort is expected to produce results by 2018 when gas distribution may begin in other areas. The mainland seems most likely to the first region to be developed. Industrial consumers have already been mapped out, while other consumers, including farmers maintaining greenhouses, have also expressed interest.