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Parliamentary questions
30 August 2018
E-003667/2018
Answer given by Mr Arias Cañete on behalf of the European Commission

The restriction of the Megalopoli 5 power plant's capacity to 500MW relates to the lack of capacity on the 400kV electricity transmission line to the Peloponnese. This restriction already existed prior to the adoption of the Law 4533/2018(1).

In the Ten-Year Network Development Plan (TYNDP) for 2018-2027(2), the Greek Transmission Systems Operator (TSO), ADMIE, foresees that the Megalopoli 5 power plant will participate in the market at full commercial capacity (811 MW), after a ‘testing’ phase and the completion of the first high-voltage corridor in the Peloponnese. Meanwhile, the dispatch of the units will be carried out according to their positioning on the merit order, thus in a non-discriminatory manner.

Article 32 of the directive 2009/72/EC(3) (‘Electricity Directive’) sets out that Member States should ensure the implementation of a system of third party access to the transmission system ensuring non-discriminatory access to network users. The same Article also provides that TSOs may refuse access, under duly substantiated reasons and regulatory scrutiny, where the TSOs lack the necessary capacity. It is also common practice that when new power plants cause congestion (i.e. lack of sufficient capacity) in the network, they are responsible for dealing with either part or all of the consequences of such congestion. This includes paying part or all of the network reinforcements required to relieve the congestion and/or, as it appears to be the case with regards to the Megalopoli 5 power plant, accepting temporary capacity limits.

The reasons for the divestment of Megalopoli 3 and Megalopoli 4 are set out in the Commission Decision on Case AT.38700 regarding a violation by the Hellenic Republic of EU competition rules, due to the discrimination of Public Power Corporation's (PPC) competitors(4).

The EU's decarbonisation objectives are pursued through different instruments, while the aim of EU competition rules is to achieve competitive markets. Yet, the remedies proposed by the Hellenic Republic in case AT.38700 take into account its choices in environmental and energy policies(5).

(1)Law 4533/2018 (Government Gazette Series I, No 75, 27 April 2018) ‘Structural measures for access to lignite and the further opening of the wholesale electricity market and other provisions’.
(2)Ten-Year Network Development Plan http://www.admie.gr/en/transmission-system/system-development/ten-year-network-development-plan-tyndp/
(3)https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/ALL/?uri=celex%3A32009L0072
(4)See Sections 2 and 4 of the Commission Decision: http://ec.europa.eu/competition/antitrust/cases/dec_docs/38700/38700_2053_3.pdf
(5)See Section 3 of the Commission Decision: http://ec.europa.eu/competition/antitrust/cases/dec_docs/38700/38700_2053_3.pdf

Last updated: 4 September 2018Legal notice