Public Power saves Greek nickel producer Larco from immediate shutdown (Reuters U.S. – December 12, 2018)

ATHENS (Reuters) – Greece’s Public Power Corp. (PPC) (DEHr.AT) will not cut the electricity supply to Larco before the start of the new year as the government works on a plan to avert a closure of Europe’s biggest nickel producer, the utility said late on Wednesday.

Larco, which is 55 percent owned by the Greek state, owes about 280 million euros ($319 million) in unpaid electricity bills to state-controlled power utility PPC, also a minority shareholder in the company.

PPC said on Wednesday it will continue to supply Larco with electricity until the end of the year after the Greek energy ministry intervened.

PPC said it could sign a new power supply contract with Larco as long as the producer commits to paying its electricity bills fully and on time. PPC also asked Larco to work on a payment plan for its accumulated debt, which will be put in place immediately.

“This is the last chance that PPC can offer to Larco, which should cut its production cost in every way to meet its obligations”, PPC said in a statement. It warned that, otherwise, it will pull the plug on Jan. 1, 2019.

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