Wind energy investors rush for deals ahead of changes in 2017

Entrepreneurs with mature wind-energy project plans in their portfolios are moving fast to establish tariff agreements with IPTO, the power grid operator, before the beginning of 2017, when new contracts will need to be granted through auction procedures.

Investors who offered comments to energypress said they do not fear the auctions but are concerned about how long it could take authorities to launch these before offering new wind-energy production agreements.

According to energypress sources, an increased number of wind-energy investors are turning up at IPTO’s offices to sign grid connection agreements within 2016 as a step towards the development of their facilities next year.

EU directives and new national legislation ratified in the summer stipulate that the renewable energy (RES) support framework will need to be shaped through competitive procedures as of January 1, 2017.

During a public consultation procedure ahead of the recent bill’s delivery to parliament, ELETAEN, the Greek Wind Energy Association, noted that experience has shown the time required by authorities to respond to such change has been “catastrophically slow”. The association added: “We hope we’re proven wrong, but we do fear that if the government decides to stage an auction, the first one will not be held until after the summer of 2017. This means that if all goes well, new agreements, following the auction, may end up being signed in 2018.”

Slow movement could prove devastating for wind-energy sector enterprises, already severely affected by the recession, various financial burdens and tax laws.