The RES special account will end 2019 in surplus territory of 50 million euros, plus a required emergency reserve of 70 million euros, deputy energy minister Gerassimos Thomas assured parliament yesterday, responding to observations and criticism by political rivals on details of a sweeping energy-sector draft bill.
“We believe that once the figures are finalized, not only will we not have a deficit, but, instead a surplus of 50 million, plus the 70 million-euro safety net,” Thomas noted. “RES stations do not face any funding problems,” he added.
The new law permits RAE, the Regulatory Authority for Energy, to impose fines for any target model discrepancies, Thomas noted, reiterating a government pledge to implement the target model by June, 2020.
Commenting on the NOME auctions, recently ended by the government, Thomas said the state-controlled power utility PPC has lost 775,529 consumers as a result of the corporation’s market share contraction. Lower-cost electricity acquired at the NOME auctions by PPC rivals has helped them achieve market share gains.
“Let’s not just focus on the past month. Electricity amounts sold [by PPC] at NOME auctions will be delivered gradually until June, 2020,” Thomas pointed out.
PPC, under financial pressure as a result of hefty unpaid receivables, could have securitized arrears in previous years, the recently appointed deputy minister noted, defending the government’s plan to securitize amounts owned by customers.
Commenting on the forthcoming gas utility DEPA privatization, Thomas said the winning bidder of DEPA Infrastructure, one of two new DEPA entities to be offered through the sale, will be given the opportunity to develop networks.
Private-sector companies have developed very good gas networks in the Thessaloniki and Thessaly areas, in contrast to state-controlled DEDA, Thomas remarked. DEDA is a wholly-owned subsidiary of DEPA.
The Alexandroupoli FSRU project plan for the country’s northeast will be transferred to DEPA Trade, the other new DEPA entity, instead of DEPA Infrastructure, to which the project was initially allocated, because DEPA Trade was deemed to be a better match, as participants of a public consultation process advised, Thomas explained.