EVIKEN officials discuss industrial issues with minister

Energy-intensive industrial enterprise concerns were discussed at a meeting yesterday between EVIKEN (the Association of Industrial Energy Consumers) officials and energy minister Giorgos Stathakis.

The approaching ends of existing industrial electricity supply deals established between industrial firms and the main power utility PPC and the current cost-saving demand response mechanism have generated unease amid industrial-sector ranks.

The current demand response mechanism (interruptability), enabling major industrial enterprises to be compensated when the TSO (ADMIE) asks them to shift their energy usage (lower or stop consumption) during high-demand peak hours, so as to balance the electricity system needs, is due to expire in November.

At yesterday’s meeting, EVIKEN officials expressed their concerns over the demand response mechanism’s approaching end, fearing electricity cost increases that would negatively impact the industrial sector’s level of competitiveness.

Official market data indicates that manufacturers, battling amid the persisting Greek recession, are showing signs of recovery.

EVIKEN is expected to release an announcement today detailing its views and objectives for the near future, including details of its propoal forwarded to the energy minister for the demand response mechanism. A reaction by the association to the government’s agreement with the country’s lenders on the Greek bailout’s second review, announced yesterday, is also expected to be included in the EVIKEN announcement.

Legislation for a permanent demand response mechanism is not expected to have been ratified by November, when the current system expires.

Even so, EVIKEN officials emerged feeling confident of positive measures being taken following their meeting with the energy minister yesterday. The session was more constructive than previous meetings, industrial sources informed.

The uncertainty felt by industrial enterprises over future electricity supply deals with PPC was also stressed during the meeting.

The energy minister promised that a finalized plan for revisions to a RES-supporting ETMEAR surcharge would soon be announced. Upper limits for ETMEAR payments made by energy-intensive enterprises are expected to be set. This is expected to reduce surcharge-related costs for various industrial sectors.