Existing gas infrastructure must be better utilized, M&M chief tells

Until now, Greece’s goal of becoming a regional gas hub has been based on the prospect of developing new infrastructure projects but, in actual fact, the most important objective should be to better utilize existing facilities such as the Revythoussa LNG terminal on the islet just off Athens, being utilized at a level of 15 percent, and also to create appropriate conditions for a liberalized market in which consumers may have access to the supplier of their choice, Panagiotis Kanellopoulos, chief executive of M&M Gas, a wholesale trading venture involving the Mytilineos Group and Motor Oil Hellas, has stressed at the Athens Energy Forum.

Kanellopoulos pointed out that although conditions provided by both Greece and DEFSA, the gas grid operator, are ready to fulfill consumer needs for importing natural gas through pipelines from the country’s northern borders, the needed legal infrastructure for such an initiative does not exist in Bulgaria. The official added that a small section of pipeline infrastructure linking Bulgaria with Romania has yet to be constructed, depriving the region from access to central European markets.

The market will determine which new infrastructure projects are truly needed and sustainable, the M&M Gas chief told the energy event.

Both the Greek and regional Balkan market are small, but clever ways need to be found to utilize the exisiting infrastructure and increase their usefulness, Kanellopoulos noted.