Extract from: © ICIS HEREN – No hope’ for planned Greek day-ahead market launch

Greek plans to launch a day-ahead electricity market came under scrutiny on Wednesday (17th June), with market participants doubting the likelihood of its implementation in the near future given the country’s new anti-austerity government.
Last year the government launched a plan to revamp its energy sector, aiming to implement an electricity day-ahead, intra-day and balancing market by mid-2017.
No news has emerged on the project since the new government came into office in January, formed by a coalition government led by left-wing party Syriza and supported by the right-wing Independent Greeks party.
So far the energy minister Panagiotis Lafazanis has opposed most plans of his predecessor, with the halt in the privatisation of Greek incumbent and the grid operator ADMIE at the centre of a controversy at the end of January (see EDEM 29 January 2015).
Speaking with ICIS on the sidelines of the Energy Trading conference in Budapest, market participants said the energy reforms now hung by a thread, with a significant delay likely.
“As long as this minister is in power, we have no hope,” said one source active in the Greek market. He said that despite plans and timelines that were put in place last year, no new official information had come to light. The source added that the minister was against any change. A second trader said that the new government was bringing the market back “to square one”.
The energy regulator RAE and LAGIE were supposed to work on the regulatory framework throughout this year. It remains unclear if work on the project continues. RAE and the energy minister were not available for comment by Wednesday evening.
“If it was just up to the minister, I would say that nothing will go forth,“ a third regional trader agreed. But he said the regulator could also push for changes in the market structure.
Despite its financial crisis and concerns over an exit of the eurozone, Greece remains in the European Union. As such, the country must continue to work towards the target model and create a framework compatible with the target model.
“It can be delayed, but, unless we leave EU, it cannot be stopped,” the second trader said. […]

(Source: © ICIS HEREN - THE ICIS HEREN REPORTS - EDEM 19115 / 17 June 2015; www.heren.com)

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