The Energy Exchange Group (Energy Exchange Group) (EnEx) in Greece has been set up in such a way by the Greek governments so as to favor the Energy Cartel with a super profit. This Energy Cartel in Greece always operates at the expense of the income of Greek citizens. Part of the super profits made by the specific energy companies in Greece, some of them are directed to the invisible financing of political parties.
The beginning of ” the crime”
The “dirty” work started by the government of Alexis Tsipras (2015-2019) and with the contribution of the lenders through the financial support programs to Greece. The government of Alexis Tsipras instituted the framework through which the specific energy cartel would operate, specifically voting for the bills (Law 4425/2016 article 7) (2016) and (Law 4512/2018 articles 73-95) (2018) respectively.
In 2017, the then Minister of Energy George Stathakis described the “benefit of consumers from the operation of the Energy Exchange” the start of operation of which you postponed for 2019. The aim of the Alexis Tsipras government was to delay the implementation of the law and not to implement it during its term so as not to shoulder the great political costs that its implementation entailed.
The Energy Exchange that plunders even the low-income retiree could not be justified by the specific Left-wing government.
The “Pyramid” set up by the Mitsotakis Government
The government of Kyriakos Mitsotakis (2019-today), on the contrary, enthusiastically implements the laws of the governments of Alexis Tsipras for the Energy Exchange and the creation of the cartel of the four energy companies.
The current Greek government is doing the same with the Superfund (HHPC) (The Hellenic Holdings and Property Company (HHPC), also known as the Superfund, is a holding company with the Greek State as the sole shareholder. It was established by law 4389/2016. Its purpose is the management of the portfolio of the Greek state, its utilization and the smooth operation of the legal entities that belong to it), which was also voted by the Alexis Tsipras government.
And now the specific Superfund is the ideal tool for the government of Kyriakos Mitsotakis to distribute the 32 billion of the EU Recovery & Resilience Fund “properly”.
With the assumption of executive power by the Government of Kyriakos Mitsotakis, the Minister of Energy and Environment, Kostis Hatzidakis, was sworn in. Through the Superfund, he appointed a new CEO, Chairman and CEO of the Public Power Corporation (PPC-PPC), who increased the price per kilowatt hour by 19%.
In the next stage, the new management of PPC quickly proceeded to de-lignification (which had been started by the government of Alexis Tsipras) and took loans with a carbon dioxide clause. Gas importers were celebrating.
(Mytilineos Holdings – one of the four companies that currently constitute the Energy cartel in Greece – imports over 41% of natural gas in Greece. In total, the four cartel companies control almost 85% of the electricity retail market).
Today, however, the narrative of de-lignification is dominated by the economic sign versus the environmental one. In this way, the inter-party political “agreement of silence” of the Greek parliamentary parties behind the closure of the PPC lignite units became apparent. The “silence agreement” is made to serve the interests of gas.
As the so-called transitional fuel from lignite to photovoltaic – wind turbines (RES) for the production of electricity. But financial figures and scientific data are relentless. When the price of natural gas is over 100 euros per megawatt hour (or even lower for some) it is better to burn as a country, for the production of electricity, domestic lignite and not imported natural gas to produce electricity.
Suppose that the combustion of natural gas also emits carbon dioxide in a ratio of a little less than one to three in relation to lignite. As for the environmental footprint of Greek lignite in the earth’s atmosphere is as much as the percentage of nicotine in slim cigarettes (Germany will close lignite plants in 2035 and China-India will open new ones)!
But the CEO of PPC, Mr. Stassis, was appointed by the Prime Minister to PPC to convert electricity from a social good into a stock market product. He accelerated the de-ligation to serve the interests of the other three companies of the Energy cartel (Mytilineos Holdings (Protergia SA), Hellenic Petroleum (Elpedison SA) and GEK-TERNA (Heron SA)). Because these three companies do not produce electricity from lignite but from natural gas and RES.
The way of speculation-System Limit Price-(SLP) in the Greek Energy Exchange (EnEx) with natural gas
The colpo gross of speculation in the Energy Exchange (EnEx) with natural gas is done with the System Limit Price (SLP). That is, at the price that will be sold every day by one of the four companies of the energy cartel which is called “last megawatt hour”
The megawatt hour that is supposed to be absolutely necessary for Greek citizens to have enough electricity the next day. Or, in other words, to have “balance” in the system.
But RES (photovoltaics and wind turbines) sell the electricity they produce at a constant price, so without the use of lignite to generate electricity, the price of imported gas used to generate electricity “determines” stock market speculation.
Given that gas is imported (and stuccoed) the game is completely out of control. The price that can be sold this so-called “last megawatt hour” reaches 3,000 euros. Why; Because it is supposedly necessary “for the Greeks to have enough electricity the next day! In order not to become black out! “
As much as this τελευταία precious last megawatt hour is sold (“so that Greek citizens do not have black out tomorrow!”), So will eventually all the other megawatt hours be sold, regardless of the price they had previously offered during the same day the other three companies of the energy cartel in Greece.
That is, one of the cartel companies offers a megawatt hour price of 100 euros in the morning, but will pay it up to… 3000 euros at noon, since the “last megawatt hour” that was sold reached the price of 3000 euros. This is the trick (colpo grosso) with the System Limit Value (TSI) of the precious “last megawatt hour”.
And immediately after that, this stock market (ie uncontrollable price) price of the precious “last megawatt hour” from the wholesale electricity market passes to the electricity retail market. That is, in the electricity bills paid by Greek citizens.
And this is achieved with the “adjustment clause” that exists in the retail electricity bills that every Greek citizen receives! The trick, then, in the Energy Exchange was set on this precious “last megawatt hour” and the “adjustment clause”.
With which the supposed “last megawatt hour” is supposed, the Greeks from the previous day supposedly avoid the black out of the next. Because the precious “last megawatt hour” supposedly ensures the balance of the system. And this happens every day!
How Greece became a champion in the field of expensive electricity?
In the first four months of 2022, the cost of electricity production in Greece by the four companies of the energy cartel ranged on average at 150-160 euros per megawatt hour. At exactly the same time period, the four companies of the cartel formed in the Energy Exchange the wholesale price of electricity that they sold to the Greeks more than 250 euros per megawatt hour.
Thus, Greece became a champion in the expensive electricity.
All four energy cartel companies have become champions in electricity profits, which are estimated at over 50% -60%. In this, the trick of the Energy Exchange, the CEO of PPC Mr. George Stassis acted as a stock market speculator.
In 2020, PPC was selling to the Greeks per megawatt hour 110 euros (retail price of electricity) when its wholesale price was only 42 euros. In 2021 (second half) PPC produced a total of 2,692 megawatt hours from its hydroelectric plants. At PPC, the megawatt hour cost 15 euros… but it sold it to the Greeks 197 euros! (Hydroelectric plants produce the cheapest electricity).
In August 2021, it introduced the “adjustment clause” in the tariffs of unsuspecting PPC customers.
In November 2021, PPC sold 17% (out of 51%) of the public participation (through the Superfund) in the share capital of PPC, in foreign funds (1.35 billion). Thus, the transformation of PPC from a public utility company into a common speculative player of the Energy Exchange was sealed.
Of course the Greek State kept the management for itself (with 34% -blocking minority). Subsequently (February 2022) it sold 49% of the low voltage distribution network (LVDN-HEDNO) to an Australian fund (Macquarie Asset Management) receiving another 1.3 billion (+800 million debt payment of LVDN-HEDNO from the buyer) .
LVDN as a monopoly of the low voltage distribution network receives every day from the Greeks (through the electricity bills) approximately 2,000,000 euros. The profits of LVDN in 2019 were 70,000,000 euros. The government of Kyriakos Mitsotakis managed to sell this golden public company in terms of profits. However, maintaining the state management here as well, in order to appoint the party affiliates of the current ruling political party.
The inadequacy of the Energy Exchange in Greece
Only in the fifth week of operation of the Energy Exchange, the price of a megawatt hour jumped from 19.74 euros to 41.79 euros and in the sixth week fell to 8.48 euros. The four energy cartel companies made huge profits. It was obvious that this was a “concerted practice”. That is, for speculation between them, to the detriment of all the unsuspecting Greeks who were locked in their homes due to coronavirus.
But the independent Greek Energy Regulatory Authority (ERA) found nothing suspicious. ERA considered the super profits of the energy cartel absolutely legal.
The reason for the inadequacy of the Greek Energy Exchange was and remains the same to this day. There is no “futures market” in the Hellenic Energy Exchange (target model). That is, there are no “bilateral contracts” between electricity producers and consumers, although they are provided by the relevant legislation!
Thus, all the electricity produced in Greece is sold through the stock market gambling of electricity (spot electricity market). That is, from the speculation that shapes the outrageous prices in the wholesale electricity market.
Their goal is for the outrageous prices of the wholesale electricity market to pass to the retail electricity market, thus to the electricity bills of the citizens. This is because in Greece 100% of the electricity produced or imported is marketed through the Energy Exchange (spot electricity market)
This is not the case in any other European country. Immediately next is Switzerland with 38%. France and Germany with 29%. England with 13%. Italy with 11%. Poland with 1%.
The fraud of the Greek government and the responsibilities of EU-Commission
Why did the government of Kyriakos Mitsotakis in November 2020 implement the legislative framework of the government of Alexis Tsipras by starting the Energy Exchange (target model) without taking into account the implementation of the Energy Exchange as in the rest of Europe?
- Without a “futures electricity market” with which the legislator protects the consumer from the speculation of the spot electricity market.
- But with 100% of the electricity available to consumers after stock market type games.
- Applying undisturbed the well-known trick of the supposedly precious but very expensive “last megawatt hour” of natural gas at the price paid by consumers and all other megawatt hours.
- Even if they are produced by the cheap hydroelectric plants of PPC.
The big mockery of Greek government subsidies
This is the weak foundation on which the vicious edifice of the Greek energy market is based. That is why it is exposed in the first great energy crisis. But this weak base is a political construct that charges the super profits of the cartel and the crazy profits of a state nomenclature to the ordinary Greek consumer.
And because it’s a political construct, it’s immoral. Because it grabs the backlog of low-income retirees and gives it to the political parties of the government and the opposition respectively, but also to the politicians involved.
The mockery is made with the so-called state subsidies on electricity bills. Here the trick is to win-win in order to reduce the political costs, but not to reduce at the same time or to increase the super profits of the cartel of the four energy companies.
Because the money for the subsidies has already been paid by the electricity consumers and in fact through their own electricity bills.
How is this done?
But the money for the subsidies comes from the Energy Transition Fund (TEM) announced by the government of Kyriakos Mitsotakis on September 13, 2021, along with the assurance that the increases in electricity would be “up to two euros per month.”
But the Energy Transition Fund (EMF) is funded primarily by the Special Renewable Energy Account (ELAPE). This Special Renewable Energy Account (ELAPE) is mainly financed by the Special Emission Reduction Fee (ETMEAR) ETMEAR, however, is paid by the consumers themselves with the electricity bills.
Nice chain trick!
In each bill they give the Greek consumer the money he has already paid (through ETMEAR) in his previous account and in fact they do not give the money directly to the consumer but directly to the electricity provider.
But the provider (especially if it belongs to the four companies of the energy cartel) has already speculated at the expense of the consumer through the Energy Exchange. Then he just completes the joke.
Entering in the consumer’s account the indication “total state subsidy” with the corresponding amount. Misleading, because of course this is not a “state subsidy” but for the money that the consumer has already paid in his previous bills through ETMEAR. At least for the most part because part of the proceeds of the subsidy also come from the famous emissions allowances.
That is, by the mechanism by which lignite was violently eradicated for the benefit of gas interests.
Thus the trick of the Greek Energy Exchange was initially based on the so-called environmental sensitivity.
It was there (in… ecology) that the other big bay of the Greek Ministry of Energy and Environment was based. Recycling (houses, colorful bins, etc.). For those who know, recycling led the inspirer of the Greek Energy Exchange (target model, etc.) from the Ministry of Energy to the Ministry of Labor because Recycling together with Energy are the big state businesses of the government. These are supplemented by the 32 billion euros of the Recovery Fund. That is, from the also Greek-style operation of the Superfund, which will manage the 32 billion of the Recovery & Resilience Fund with pure private-financial standards.
The EU Commission does not see anything wrong with the frauds of the Greek governments.