Greek Energy Sector

Greek Energy Sector

Investing in the Greek Energy Sector

Located at the crossroads between East and West combined with the country’s participation in tripartite cooperations like the one forged between Greece, Cyprus and Israel, offers  Greece the opportunity to play a key role in the South Balcans and East Mediterranean region energy markets. The ample availability of renewable energy potential (wind, hydro, biomass, geothermal, solar & solar thermal) combined with ongoing large-scale infrastructure projects involving Greece (TAP-IGB-EastMed Gas Pipelines, EuroAsia Interconnector, hydrocarbons  exploration and development) show that Greece will be a key player in the formulation of the EU energy mix and will provide significant investment opportunities in all energy industries.

The Greek Energy System

 In recent years, the Greek energy system is characterized by: 

  • the decreasing consumption of conventional fuels based in large part on lignite which was strategically chosen for electricity production after the oil crisis of the 70s, 
  • high imports dependency which included crude oil, oil products and natural gas
  • the increasing penetration of natural gas into final consumption in Greece, although it still represents a small share of total consumption, and falls short from the European average
  • increased RES electricity production and improved of energy efficiency, reflecting Greece’s efforts to adopt European and national policies
  • The increasing participation of natural gas in electricity production, following the introduction of the CO2 tax

The energy sector in Greece has a higher contribution to gross value added (GVA) and employment than in most EU countries, and is poised to grow significantly in the coming years, driven by a number of significant factors:

  • required optimization of the energy mix, which consists of the reduction of fossil-fuel generated electricity and increased contribution from RES. This shift will be driven both by the revised EU policy of 35% renewable energy sources by 2030, and by the preference for cheaper and cleaner energy sources such as natural gas
  • the state’s planned privatization of major energy assets such as the Public Power Corporation (PPC), the natural gas distributor (DEPA), the Hellenic Electricity Distribution Network Operator (HEDNO) and the 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, electricity and oil resources through mega-infrastructure projects such as the TAP-IGB-EastMed gas pipelines, EuroAsia Interconnector or gas and oil exploration and production.
  • energy efficiency and cost reduction driven by such technologies as smart metering, smartgrid technologies, LED lighting, energy efficient buildings, etc.
  • major infrastructure development initiatives such as the interconnection of the Greek islands with the main electricity grid

Why Greece

Strategic Position – Greece is currently emerging as 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 offshore reserves (e.g. LNG terminals)

Generation Potential – Due to its climate conditions (Greece enjoys more than 250 days of sunshine—or 3,000 hours of sun—a year, and has a strong wind capacity), the country possesses significant untapped generation potential –particularly in renewables – which can enhance the EU energy mix.

Government Support and Legislation – the Ministries of Environment & Energy, and Development & Investments, have spearheaded several major investment projects over the past years, including the TAP-IGB-EastMed natural gas pipelines, the new liquefied natural gas terminal in Revithoussa, and major RES investments. This, in combination with Greece’s upgraded energy investment regulatory framework, provides exceptional opportunities for investment in all energy sectors.

Main investment opportunities

  • Privatization of state assets 
  • New infrastructure in natural gas transmission (liquefied natural gas terminals, natural gas pipelines, natural gas distribution systems)
  • International public tenders for hydrocarbon
  • Renewable energy projects (wind, solar-thermal, biomass, small hydro, geothermal etc.)
  • Energy efficient businesses and investments
  • Main grid interconnectivity with the islands, upgrading and development of cross-border electricity grid interconnections (Maritsa East, EuroAsia InterConnector)

A strong sector with several recent success stories:

  • US Third Point Gas has entered into the share capital of Energean Oil & Gas (a Greek Oil & Gas producer and explorer) through an equity capital injection of $60 million.
  • Chinese Shenhua Group has entered into a co-operation agreement with Copelouzos Group to develop RES projects and upgrade lignite units in a € 3 billion investment plan
  • China State Grid has acquired a 24% stake of the Independent Power Transmission Operator (ADMIE), for € 320million
  • Canadian investment fund Fairfax Holdings has become the third largest shareholder of Greek industrial energy group Mytilineos, acquiring a 5% stake worth about €30 million ($41 million)
  • US York Capital Management has announced €100 million investments in Greece's GEK Terna, acquiring a 10% stake of in the company. 
  • The SENFLUGA Energy Infrastructure Holdings S.A. consortium of Snam S.p.A., Enagás Internacional S.L.U. and Fluxys S.A. acquired 66% of DESFA's equity for a total value of EUR 535 million

Download the licensing procedure guide for RES investment projects

KPMG energy guide EG   KPMG energy guide short EG