PPC needs to operate without restrictions, CEO notes

Greece’s west Macedonia region, in the country’s north, represents a vital region for main power utility PPC’s production capabilities, the corporation’s chief executive Manolis Panagiotakis told a news conference yesterday after completing a tour of the region’s lignite mines and power stations over the past few days.

Panagiotakis also noted that the region’s provincial city of Ptolemaida, where PPC maintains major facilities, is pivotal to the corporation.

PPC’s chief executive was also joined by other highly ranked PPC officials for a tour of the corporation’s production facilities in the wider area as part of an effort to bolster ties with company workers and the community.

Panagiotakis pointed out that PPC was currently understaffed, while, in a remark aimed at sub-contractors associated with the corporation, the CEO noted the company is capable of taking on many projects alone.

The company head said PPC needs to operate as a proper company and hire staff whenever and wherever it sees fit, without the bailout-related restrictions imposed in recent years.

Panagiotakis also said PPC requires free carbon emission permits as soon as possible as a means of protecting the coproration’s lignite-based electricity production.

Commenting on the corporation’s prospective new power station in the area, Ptolemaida 5, Panagiotakis, describing it as a flagship project, said its development is set to commence. A letter of guarantee by the project’s contractor is still pending but the objective is to start work within September, the PPC chief said.

An older power station, Ptolemaida 3, damaged by a fire last November, will not be relaunched, Panagiotakis said, adding that PPC will guarantee the region’s power supply.

Commenting on PPC’s effort to collect overdue unpaid electricity bills owed by consumers, Panagiotakis condemned wealthier consumers by noting that “those who don’t have money are paying and those who do have money are not paying.”

PPC has heightened efforts to collect unpaid overdue electricity bills. The total overdue amount is now at about two billion euros. The corporation has adopted advanced systems to cross-examine consumer data as part of the effort. Consumers considered able but unwilling to pay are being targeted.