Parliamentary bypass to be sought for energy measures

Negotiations seeking to settle pending bailout-related energy sector issues will restart today in Brussels with Greek energy minister Giorgos Stathakis to take part. Final decisions could be reached during the course of the day.

A demand by the country’s lenders for the sale of PPC units is at the core of the overall energy package.

As previously reported by energypress, the energy ministry has pushed hard to avoid the sale of PPC units as it is believed that such a measure would not make it though parliament, where the coalition maintains just a slim majority.

The country’s lenders want the sale of a 40 percent proportion of PPC’s lignite-fired and hydropower stations and are linking this demand to a recent European Court decision requiring the Greek State to ensure lignite source access to third parties besides the state-controlled power utility.

With this in mind, the negotiating sides will seek a PPC units sale solution that could bypass a parliamentary vote. The government appears willing to accept the prospect of a PPC downsize va such a route as the utility’s prospective contraction into a smaller yet more robust enterprise is now viewed as an inevitable development.

Besides progress needed on other enery sector issues, the starting date to be set for the sale of PPC units will be a key factor in the effort by the negotiating sides to reach a compromise deal.

The lenders are pushing for the sale procedure to begin immediately following a review of PPC’s market share contraction progress in June and be completed within the first half of 2018. The Greek government is attempting to delay the review of PPC until September and use the procedure’s findings to determine the capacity of PPC units that will need to be sold.