Stolen electricity at 3.2 pct of total consumption in 2016

Stolen electricity power soared to 3.2 pct of total electricity consumption in 2016 from 0.5 pct in the 2000-2010 period, or 1,640 GWh, Greece’s Energy Regulatory Authority said, announcing intensified controls to combat thise phenomenon which has taken unprecedented proportions because of the prevailing crisis.

The authority said that controls made in 2016 revealed 10,616 cases of electricity steal, the highest ever recorded, from 400 in 2006. Based on conservative calculations losses are estimated at 150 million euros annually, while PPC officials said losses were around 200-300 million euros, “equal to the loss from fuel smuggling”.

The regulatory authority has adopted a new Network Management Code describing procedures followed during controls and fines imposed. Under the code, authorities can impose retrospective charges up to five years back for energy consumed without being paid, while fines for electricity stealing could reach double the regular energy price.