DESFA to lower fees on use of infrastructure

National Natural Gas Transmission System Operator SA (DESFA) on Tuesday announced it would lower its fees on the use of natural gas transmission infrastructure from May 1, 2017, a benefit expected to be rolled over to the final rates for enterprises and households.

Sotiris Nikas, DESFA’s chairman and CEO said this reduction was the result of an over-performance in 2017, with profits expected to reach 94 million euros (2.5 times more than the previous year). Part of these profits will be used for the amortization of sums from previous years (estimated at around 326 million euros), while the rest will be used to reduce fees up to 40 pct.

Transmission fees account for around 10 pct of the industry’s rates and 5-7 pct of household rates.

DESFA attributed its improved profitability to a rise in natural gas consumption by electricity production units, industry and households, due to a decline in gas prices. Natural gas consumption is expected to reach 4.6 billion cubic metres this year, 50 pct up compared with 2015.

Nikas expressed his confidence that a tender to sell a 66 pct of the company to a strategic investor will be completed successfully this time, to the benefit of the company and the country, adding that the price of the sale will be determined also by the company’s high cash reserves (around 200 million euros).

DESFA’s management also presented progress of works to upgrade its LNG terminal in Revithousa, including the additional of a third tank. Completion of works is expected in September 2018 and commercial operations to begin in December 2018.