PPC sale plan for new firms with existing customers suspended again

A main power utility PPC proposal entailing the carving out of existing customers for the establishment of new supply firms to be offered to independent suppliers has been suspended yet again, until the utility’s bailout-required sell-off of lignite units has been completed, the corporation’s CEO Manolis Panagiotakis has announced.

The split-and-sale proposal, presented by state-controlled PPC as an effective way of reducing its dominant retail electricity market share, as is demanded by bailout terms, has been brought forth and retracted on a number of occasions by the utility. It was most recently tabled by PPC in November, to no avail, during bailout review negotiations between the Greek government and the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Competition.

A month earlier, PPC’s administration had declared that a first package containing 500,000 existing customers, drawn from the low and medium-voltage categories, was ready to be offered to independent suppliers. At the time, utility officials contended necessary legislative amendments by the energy ministry were being anticipated before the plan could proceed. In response, sources linked to energy minister Giorgos Stathakis suggested that PPC had not forwarded any official plan.