EPS and electricity traders in Serbia: its all about power market rules, says Aleksandar Obradović, CEO of EPS

, News Serbia Energy

Aleksandar Obradović, interim CEO of EPS, affirms that negative cash flow of the company currently accounts for about 41 billion dinars, stated Aleksandar Obradovic for Nin weekly magazine. Responding to a question whether the reason of this difficult situation partly lies in corruption, he said: “The management of EPS is eager to identify possible irregularities in business operations because a constant suspicion that they really exist casts a shadow over excellent production results of the company. At the moment, we are doing analysis on unauthorized expenditure, and EPS will certainly disclose all required information to the authorities, as it has always done.”

However, Obradović refused to openly pronounce on Minister of Energy’s allegations that in the previous six year EPS deliberately created inadequate plans regarding electricity imports which, consequently, triggered large emergency imports. He notes that electricity purchases plans for the following year are usually made in August, as well as that required quantities are purchased according to the Public Procurement Law, though applying restrictive procedure along with pre-qualification. The only criterion is the lowest price. Only if the deviations from the plans were significant or electricity cannot be delivered within a legally determined timeframe, the emergency importing would be undertaken. The data obtained from EPS shows that there were no emergency imports in the period 2006-2010. The amounts spent on emergency imports are, respectively, 11.4 million euros in 2010, 23.8 million euros in 2011 and 40.2 million in this year.

In 2010, seven companies took part in emergency importing deals, out of which the largest shares were held by HSE Balkan Energy (37.25%) and GEN-I (24.5%). Last year EPS purchased emergency electricity from six companies (the largest share had Alpiq energy, 35.52% and GEN-I, 29.26%), while in 2012 as many as 17 companies sold electricity to EPS. Hamović’s company EFT figures in the statistics for the first time this year, taking the fourth place with a share of 11.36% while Lazarević’s company Rudnap is in the tenth place with an insignificant share.

When asked how the new management would solve a problem of accumulated debts and other problems, executive director of EPS replied that the specific measures would be announced soon. “Solutions are not just in the hands of EPS, but in the entire chain. It is necessary to create social maps of the poorest households, as well as to achieve Serbia’s goal of progressively opening up electricity market by 2015. A few weeks ago, EPS signed with the Power Utility of the Republic of Srpska an agreement on direct purchase of electricity, thereby closing 70% of electricity gap in 2013, which is a purchasing model that we will apply in the future,” said Obradović.

Source Serbia Energy Magazine