RES investors need swift ministerial decisions after EC law approval

The European Commission’s approval earlier this week of Greece’s new RES law as legal framework that complies with EU directives on state aid regulations generates some hope that wind energy projects will be in a position to utilize the new feed-in premiums offered. However, the threat of an investment void remains.

As the next step towards utilization of the feed-in premiums, investors expect swift ministerial decisions concerning the shape of agreements required between them and LAGIE, the Electricity Market Operator responsible for the operation of the wholesale electricity market in Greece, or HEDNO, the Hellenic Electricity Distribution Network Operator, locally acronymed DEDDIE.

Then, investors who have already signed connection agreements will need to sign new contracts to qualify for the feed-in premiums before beginning construction of their new RES projects next year.

The signing of these agreements will need to be completed during the remainder of 2016, meaning that fast delivery of ministerial decisions is urgent.

As of January 1, 2017, the RES support framework will need to be based on tenders. Investors, in comments to energypress, noted that they do not fear these competitive procedures but the time that may be needed to prepare the first tender.

Past experience has shown that such changes have been carried out at a devastatingly slow pace.

According to estimates, the first auction is not expected to take place before the summer of 2017. This essentially means that, if all goes well, new agreements may be signed within 2018.