Greece's Public Power seeks higher price from two bidders for coal plants
* Two binding bids in coal plants sale
* One bid from Greece's GEK Terna, Czech Seven Energy, sources say
* Second bid by Greek industrial group Mytilineos -sources
* PPC seeks higher price, board to meet this week to decide
Greece's Public Power Corp. (PPC) is seeking a higher price from two bidders for three coal-fired plants it is selling to boost competition in the energy market, a company source said on Wednesday.
The sale was a condition of Greece's last international bailout and the deadline for bids expired on Wednesday. It had been repeatedly pushed back since the tender was launched last year for various reasons.
PPC is selling two plants after a European Union court ruled that the utility had abused its dominant position in the coal market.
The state-controlled utility asked bidders on Wednesday to raise their offers and its board will meet on Friday to evaluate them, a source from the company said on condition of anonymity.
PPC is selling two plants in the town of Megalopoli on the southern Peloponnese along with another plant and a licence to build a new one in Meliti, northern Greece, after a European Union court ruled that the utility had abused its dominant position in the coal market.
Greek group GEK Terna, jointly with Czech company Seven Energy, submitted one of the bids, a government official told Reuters on condition of anonymity. A source close to the sale said that GEK Terna had bid for all the assets on sale.
The other bidder was Greek industrial group Mytilineos , the government official said. Mytilineos was not available for comment but an official with knowledge of the matter said the group bid only for the plant in Meliti.
PPC, which is 51 percent state-owned, and the energy ministry are handling the divestment and the European Commission is overseeing the process.
PPC had shortlisted six investors in the sale.
PPC said last week that some of the plants had swung to profit after about 400 people opted to move to other subsidiaries of the group or had retired under a voluntary exit scheme.
(By Angeliki Koutantou; Editing by Susan Fenton)