Energy exchange equity line-up issues delaying preparations

Problems encountered by candidate shareholders of Greece’s prospective energy exchange in their efforts to legalize their participation in the venture are causing set-up delays, energypress sources have informed.

LAGIE, the Electricity Market Operator, has been given a 15-day extension to submit a Greek energy exchange investment plan to RAE, the Regulatory Authority for Energy, by the end of the month.

The operator will then need to stage a general meeting to endorse the new exchange. Its founding act needs to be ready within May, according to a bailout term faced by Greece.

LAGIE envisions an energy exchange shareholder line-up of the power and gas grid operators, IPTO and DEFSA, respectively, itself, as well as private-sector institutions, namely the Cyprus stock exchange, the EBRD, and the Athens Stock Exchange, the venture’s main shareholder.

According to a related law, the private sector will control at least 51 percent of the new energy exchange company as a means of ensuring it steers clear of obstacles and restrictions concerning flexibility and staffing at public-sector enterprises.

If the current complications faced by prospective shareholders are not overcome, then a simpler company may be founded, with the Athens Stock Exchange controlling 51 percent and LAGIE the other 49 percent, as an initial step to avoid missing the deadline, before other institutional shareholders eventually also hop on board.

As part of the transition leading to the implementation of the target model, RAE will need to certify the firm as a market operator within three months of its establishment.

The target model envisions market coupling, or harmonization of EU wholesale markets.