Renewables, the Energy Exchange, DESFA and natural gas were the main subjects during the 2nd day of the 4th Energy Symposium


Athens, Wednesday, May 8 2019 - The 4th Energy Symposium, organized by the Hellenic Association for Energy Economics (HAEE), at the Divani Caravel Hotel in Athens, continued with undiminished interest for its second day on Tuesday.

During this day's proceedings, the main topics that were covered were the role of LNG and pipeline gas, DESFA's success story, the Energy Exchange, sustainability and the new financing and corporate business models, innovation and the role of networks in the energy sector and developments in RES.

In her keynote address, Megan Richards, Director of Energy Policy for DG Energy, spoke about the EU's long-term energy strategy about green growth. Specifically, about Greece, she underlined that there is very active participation when it comes to clean energy in the islands, while she estimated that there will be new employment as a result of the energy transition.

The session about the evolution of the natural gas markets (pipelines & LNG) followed under the moderation of Valérie Ducrot, Executive Director of the World Energy Council – Global Gas Centre (WEC – GGC). Mahdjouba Belaifa, Head of the Gas Market Analysis Department of GECF, spoke about the Forum's role as an important player in the global gas market. Samuele Furfari, Professor of geopolitics of energy at the Université Libre de Bruxelles, said that technology's role is crucial in a quickly changing world and he added that technological developments fundamentally change energy realities. Lucie Roux, Senior Writer for LNG News and Analysis of S&P Global Platts, estimated that the European market is very interested in buying additional LNG quantities from the US and other suppliers. Michael Andreou, Secretary Board of Directors of DEFA, said that Cyprus has entered the natural gas race for good through a series of projects with national and peripheral significance to be concluded in the future, which will transform the gas market in the island and enhance its importance in the region. Federico Regola, Managing Director of Zenith, noted during his speech that despite the positive signs in the gas market, it will take more improvements in order to have proper competition. Ioannis Mitropoulos, General Manager of Natural Gas Greece, commented that in the Greek retail market, competition mostly concerns prices, while in European markets it concerns services, although this trend has now appeared on behalf of the consumers. Christos Skoulidas, Technical Director of EDA Attica, spoke about the role of his company in growing the gas market and he pointed out that the target is to begin with a new expansion of the gas network within in the next five years.

Consequently, Greek Foreign Minister, George Katrougalos, analyzed the significance of turning Greece into an energy hub, as it stands in the crossroads between Asia, Africa and Europe. Furthermore, he spoke about Turkey's latest provocations in the Cypriot EEZ, commenting that Ankara will further expand its isolation through such acts.

Romania's Foreign Minister, Tudor Butazu, focused on the peripheral dimension of energy developments.

The topic of the next session was DESFA's success story under the moderation of Dr. Kostas Andriosopoulos, Chairman of HAEE. First, Riccardo Lambiris, CEO of HRAF, said that the new shareholder of DESFA consists of great players of the natural gas market and this brings value to the company. He also said that in 2019 the tenders for the privatization of DEPA and the gas storage in Kabala will commence. Argyro Banila, Assistant Director for Structured Finance and Syndications of National Bank of Greece, presented the bank's profile and spoke about its participation in DESFA's tender. Paolo Ventrella, Business Development Manager of Snam pointed out that Snam and all the other shareholders did their best to enable this privatization in the proper way and the full alignment of interests among buyers and sellers has been at the basis of the success, while all the members of the Consortium have demonstrated to the Privatization Fund and then to Hellenic Republic that they are a strong and reliable partner for DESFA. Fernando Kalligas Castiella, Country Manager of Enagás, mentioned that his company believes that demand for power through gas in Greece will grow, there will be more competition and growth of renewables, while interconnections will bring even greater demand. Communications & Public Affairs Manager of Fluxys Rudy Van Beurden also spoke about the role of privatizations.

During the session concerning the Greek Energy Exchange, the moderator was Tasos Garis, Vice Chairman of HAEE. BoD Member of the Regulatory Authority for Energy (RAE), Nektaria Karakatsani, spoke extensively about the significance of the target model, as well as developments taking place in ACER about recommendations towards national authorities. Michael Filipou, CEO of the Hellenic Energy Exchange, analyzed the structure and operation of the exchange, offering significant information to the audience. Nick Frydas, Senior Energy Specialist of International Finance Corporation (IFC), spoke about the trade relations inside a competitive market and he emphasized on the APEX project with a focus on Albania. Ashutosh Shastri, BoD Member of the Global Gas Centre-World Energy Council (WEC –GGC) and Konstantinos Athanasiadis, President of the Hellenic Association of Electricity Trading and Supply Companies (ESEPIE) contributed with well documented presentations.

Andreas Shiamishis, Deputy CEO & CFO of Hellenic Petroleum (HELPE), spoke about energy developments in Greece and the group's role within the market. He said that HELPE's target is to have 300-400 MW of renewables in the next few years and he noted that profits of HELPE rose in the last 3-4 years through the transformation of the group's structure and governance, as well as its expanding presence.

Arhouros Zervos, Chairman of REN21 was awarded during the Symposium for his contribution in the energy sector. The award was presented by Spiros Papaefthimiou, Vice Chairman of HAEE and Associate Professor at the Technical University of Crete. Mr. Zervos spoke about the drastic and decisive policies needed to hit the set energy and climate targets. Furthermore, he mentioned that in the sectors outside of power production, there is a huge gap concerning emissions reduction.

During the next session about sustainability and the new financing and corporate business models, the moderator was Emilios Galariotis, Board Member of HAEE and Professor of Finance at the Audencia Business School and the Institute of Finance. Epistimi Oikonomopoulou, Policy Officer at DG ENER, presented the new multiyear framework of the EU, which is under discussion and specifies the path towards achieving the targets towards 2030 and 2050. Harris Damaskos, Senior Banker of European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), gave his bank's estimations concerning the financing of renewable projects in Greece. Haris Doukas, Assistant Professor at the National Technical University of Athens made projections about the future of clean energy and energy efficiency in Grreece. Dusan Klinar, Professor at the Faculty of Chemistry and Chemical Technology of the Universities of Maribor and ZRS Bistra Ptuj contributed with a comprehensive presentation .

The following session was about innovation and the role of networks in the energy sector. The moderator was Miguel Palacios, Academic Dean Executive Education, at ESCP and Europe Business School. Maher Chebbo, Executive Officer–Chief Innovation Officer of GE Digital Energy Solutions, presented his company's views when it comes to the energy transition and new applications. Nicholas Chatziargyriou, the Chairman of the Hellenic Electricity Distribution Network Operator (HEDNO), said that the consumer now has a central role in the energy system through the production and storage of energy. On the other hand, the operator now manages data as well as energy. Harry Vovos, Head of Corporate and Investment Banking, National Bank of Greece (NBG) said that the require investment for the upgrading of EU's power grid is 140 billion Euros plus another 70 billion for natural gas, therefore banking institutions must play a more active part in order to lead to the transition of these networks. Thomas Nikolakakis, Associate Analyst - Energy Systems Modeling IITC of IRENA noted that his organization has focused greatly on the role of energy flexibility, as well as decentralized production.

Consequently, a speech was made by Michalis Verroiopoulos, Secretary General for Energy & Mineral Resources of the Ministry of Environment & Energy. Mr. Verroiopoulos presented the government's energy policy as well as the future steps that must be taken.

The topic of the final session of the day was the developments in RES, under the moderation of Alexandra Sdoukou, Adviser to the President of New Democracy. Dionysios Papachristou, Director of the Press & Public Relations Office in the Regulatory Authority for Energy (RAE), presented the authority's planning about the regulatory framework of renewables. Panagiotis Papastamatiou, CEO of the Hellenic Wind Energy Association (ELETAEN), spoke about the challenges that the wind sector faces and what must be done to overcome them. Konstantinos Venetsanos, Project Finance Manager, National Bank of Greece (NBG), focused on the issue of financing renewables projects. Konstantinos Tomaras, Deputy CEO of Spyropoulos SA, analyzed the growth of photovoltaics in the Greek market. Vassilis Spiliotopoulos, Managing Director Greece & Cyprus of Siemens-Gamesa described the ways that Greece could attract more investment in wind energy. Athanasios Stubos, Research Director, Head of the Environmental Research Laboratory and Institute, Director at the National Research Center Demokritos, described hydrogen's future role as an energy carrier.

For more information you may contact Evangelos Kletsas at: E: | Τ: +30 210 9230422 | Mob.: +30 6946466405.


(Below you may find photos of the 2nd day of the Symposium)