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Greece

Greece

Sinovel interest may reawaken Greek wind

GREECE: The renewable arm of Greece's Public Power Corporation, PPC Renewables, and Chinese turbine manufacturer Sinovel are discussing co-investment in a 200MW onshore wind farm in northern Greece.

The deal, which follows a strategic partnership announced in April, could give PPC Renewables access to much-needed financing while allowing Sinovel to make further inroads in Europe. PPC Renewables aims to more than double its current 148MW installed capacity by 2015.

"We are at the beginning of a relationship," said PPC Renewables CEO Ioannis Tispouridis. "Their interest is great and we are now examining the terms and conditions for investing in specific projects." The first project could see Sinovel make an equity investment in the planned 200MW onshore wind project. Financing could also come from the China Development Bank, which Tispouridis said would act like an export credit agency.

The strategic partnership also foresees Sinovel establishing a manufacturing presence in Greece. "No details have been worked out but it's possible that we could take a small stake in the manufacturing outfit," said Tispouridis. He added that Sinovel could use a Greek manufacturing base as a gateway to Europe, while business opportunities could also be opened up in the Middle East and Turkey.

In the future, PPC Renewables and Sinovel expect to collaborate on an offshore wind farm of roughly 200MW. Greece's generally deep waters have been a deterrent and there is currently no wind capacity offshore. Tispouridis believes the country's offshore industry could finally start moving in the second half of the decade. When it does, the government is expected to select projects through a tender process.

Sinovel has also been scouting out deals elsewhere in Europe. In July, it signed a deal with Irish developer Mainstream Renewable Power that could see 1GW of wind projects built in Ireland in the next five years.

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