PPC lignite units sale plan heading to parliament early March

A draft bill detailing the main power utility PPC’s lignite assets to be placed for sale, a bailout term, the dates of related tenders, as well as labor issue plans for these facilities, is expected to be submitted to Greek Parliament for ratification within the next few weeks, probably early March, according to sources.

The energy ministry has been working on the draft bill concerning the sale of PPC lignite units for quite some time.

The new PPC sale plan’s tender is scheduled to be announced in June.

Two sale packages are being prepared, one for the country’s north, including Meliti I and a Meliti II license, and one for the south, including Megalopoli III and IV.

The draft bill’s section on labor issues concening the lignite units to be sold is not expected to differ greatly from a previous bill concerning an older attempt to sell a percentage of PPC, locally dubbed “Little PPC”. The labor-related terms in that bill required prospective buyers to maintain most jobs for at least five years and transfer Megalopoli and Meliti workers to other utility units.

The European Directorate for Competition staged a market test last month to measure the level of investor interest and provide a platform for queries. Greece’s future electricity market conditions preoccupied the minds of most market test participants.

Prospective buyers sought information on a variety of matters such as lignite’s anticipated percentage in the country’s future energy mix; CAT remuneration eligibility of units being sold; the course of CO2 emission right prices; the timing of the target model’s implementation; the futures of the Vevi mine – currently closed – and mines in Florina; as well as license issues.