Greece-FYROM energy relations are about to be significantly upgraded with infrastructure that will make Greece a key factor in the energy supply of the neighboring state and the wider region.
The new projects include the construction of a gas pipeline from Thessaloniki to Skopje and the upgrading of the electricity interconnection of the two countries, while there are good prospects for the trade of electricity and liquid fuels.
Hellenic Petroleum (ELPE) has controlled the majority of OKTA Skopje refinery since 1999, which as of 2002 it has been interconnected with the Hellenic Petroleum Refinery in Thessaloniki via a fuel pipeline. However, both the refinery (in 2013) and the pipeline have stopped operating and the Hellenic Petroleum uses the 350 million-liter tanks and wagon loading facilities in the refinery’s premises for meeting the needs of the local market.
Hellenic Petroleum holds a 75 pct share of the FYROM fuel market, with an annual turnover of more than 834,000 cubic meters, company’s sources said to the Athens-Macedonian News Agency. “In addition, due to the significant storage capacity, OKTA maintains significant safety reserves for smooth and seamless supply to the market in times of potential energy crisis.
Moreover, in case of an agreement with the FYROM government to reopen the pipeline connecting directly OKTA’s facilities with the Hellenic Petroleum Refinery in Thessaloniki, Skopje is expected to be upgraded to a regional energy hub, facilitating Hellenic Petroleum’s further penetration in the neighboring region of Kosovo and the markets of South Serbia, Western Bulgaria and possibly Albania.”