Located at the crossroads between East and West, Greece is positioned to play a particularly significant role in the region’s energy sector.
Investing in the Greek Energy Sector
Located at the crossroads between East and West, Greece is positioned to play a particularly significant role in the region’s energy sector. The ample availability of renewable energy potential (wind, hydro, biomass, geothermal, solar & solar thermal) combined with ongoing large-scale infrastructure projects involving Greece (TAP Gas Pipeline, oil exploration) mean that the country will be a key player in the formulation of all of Western Europe’s energy mix and will provide significant investment opportunities in the Energy and Energy Saving industries.
The Greek Energy System
In recent years, the Greek energy system is characterized by:
(a) a steady increase in energy consumption due to economic development and consuming behavior changes,
(b) high consumption of conventional fuels based in large part on lignite which was strategically chosen for electricity production after the oil crisis of the 70s,
(c) high imports dependency which included crude oil, oil products and natural gas which was recently introduced and
(d) a gradual increase of RES deployment and improvement of energy efficiency, reflecting Greece’s efforts to adopt EU 202020 policies
The energy sector in Greece has a higher contribution to GVA and employment than most EU countries, and is poised to grow significantly in the next years, driven by a number of significant factors:
• the required optimization of the energy mix , which consists of the reduction of fossil-fuel generated electricity and the increased of energy from RES. This shift will be driven both by the revised EU policy of 27% renewable energy sources by 2030, and by the preference for cheaper energy sources such as natural gas
• the state’s planned privatization of major energy assets such as PPC, the Natural Gas distributor (DEPA) and Hellenic Petroleum
• the liberalization of the electricity and natural gas markets and the further separation of production and supply from transmission networks
• the potential for Greece to become a European gateway for natural gas and oil resources through such projects as the TAP gas pipeline, or the gas and oil drilling opportunities in the Aegean and Ionian seas
• efforts to improve energy efficiency and reduce cost driven by such technologies as smart metering, smartgrid technologies, LED lighting, energy efficient buildings etc
• major infrastructure initiatives such as the interconnection of the Greek islands
Strategic Position – Greece can become a key player in the transportation of energy from East to West through pipeline projects, electricity grid interconnectivity and alternative means of ensuring Security of Supply through Mediterranean offshore reserves (e.g. LNG terminals)
Generation Potential – Due to its climate conditions (Greece enjoys more than 250 days of sunshine—or 3,000 sunny hours—a year, and has many areas of strong winds), the country possesses significant untapped generation potential –particularly in renewables – which can enhance the energy mix for all of Europe.
Government support and legislation – the ministries of Energy and Development have spearheaded several major investment projects over the past years, including the TAP natural gas pipeline, the new liquid gas terminal in Revytousa, and major RES investments. This, in combination with Greece’s wide-ranging investment regulatory framework, provides for exceptional opportunities for investment in a number of areas.
Main investment opportunities
• Privatization of state assets
• New infrastructure in natural gas transmission (liquid gas terminals, gas pipelines, gas distribution systems)
• International public Tenders for the Hydrocarbon Exploration in different areas of Greece .
• Renewable energy projects (Wind, , Solar-thermal, Biomass, Small Hydro, Geothermal etc.)
• Energy efficiency businesses and investments
• Grid connectivity for the islands (PPP)
Energy as % of Greek GVA
Share of renewable energy in total power generation
Total RES Capacity (MW)
Required investment to reach EC202020 renewable target
A strong sector with several recent success stories:
• US Third Point Gas has entered into the share capital of Energean Oil & Gas (a Greek based Oil & Gas producer and explorer) through an equity capital injection of $60 million.
• Qatar Petroleum International (QPI) and the Greek company GEK Terna have signed an agreement to acquire an interest in the Heron II power plant, signaling QPI's first investment in Greece. Heron II is currently Greece's most efficient power plant.
• Azeri state energy company Socar signed deal for acquisition of Greece's natural gas transmission network operator DESFA.
• Canadian investment fund Fairfax Holdings has become the third-biggest shareholder of Greek industrial energy group Mytilineos , acquiring a 5 percent stake worth about 30 million euros ($41 million).
• US York Capital Management recently announced 100 mn € investments in Greece's energy group GEK Terna, acquiring a 10% share of the firm.
Ministry of Environment, Energy & Climate Change (www.ypeka.gr)
Regulatory Authority for Energy (www.rae.gr)
Centre for Renewable Energy Sources (www.cres.gr)
Public Power Corporation (www.dei.gr)
Hellenic Transmission System Operator (www.desmie.gr)
Greek Association of RES Electricity Producers (www.hellascres.gr)
Public Gas Corporation S.A. (www.depa.gr)
Hellenic Petroleum S.A. (www.hellenic-petroleum.gr)
Greek Solar Industry Association (www.ebhe.gr))
Hellenic Association of Photovoltaic Companies (www.helapco.gr)
Hellenic Wind Energy Association (www.eletaen.gr)
Hellenic Biofuels and Biomass Association (www.sbibe.gr)
Hellenic Association of Biomass (www.hellabiom.gr)
Hellenic Association of Geothermal Energy & Renewable Energy Sources (www.esegepe.gr)
Hellenic Small Hydro Association (HSHA) (www.microhydropower.gr)