Hando Sutter, the newly elected CEO of Eesti Energia, said he sees the environment and adaptation to changing circumstances as his greatest challenges.
Sutter, who hitherto worked as the regional market manager for the Baltic countries and Russia in the energy company Nord Pool, will start his new job on December 1, reports ERR radio news.
Sutter said the greatest challenges of the energy sector today are due to modern environment. He added that the changes happen fast, prices have dropped and Estonia and the Baltics are well integrated with the Nordic countries.
"That the energy prices are coming down is good news for the consumers. Eesti Energia, however, has to adapt to this world, so it is no longer only about supplying customers in Estonia, but coping in a large market that covers at least the Baltic and the Nordic countries," Sutter said.
He added that expanding oil shale production is a great opportunity to secure the continued existence of shale energy.
"There are two issues: first is the further valorization of oil shale, taking more out of it. The second is to reduce the impact on the environment. These issues are well covered by our strategy and I believe that if this strategy is successfully implemented, Eesti Energia stands a chance," Sutter said.
ETV's "Aktuaalne Kaamera" reports that Sutter, who was recruited after a targeted search for a CEO by the supervisory board, did not find it easy to accept Eesti Energia's offer.
Sutter said that Eesti Energia has so far been managed very well. He added that it would be too hasty to say anything specific about his own plans for the company.
He said he plans to spend the next two months getting acquainted with the company and putting together a team.
"If you want to hear a final plan from me today, then I believe it is a bit too early. Regarding the projects abroad, what I would call the export of our experience in oil shale production to the world, then this is great. The risk that Eesti Energia as a national company should take by these projects must be well thought through. As these project are capital-intensive, then this is something I will have to review," said Sutter, who stressed that he will not start in his new position until December 1.
The tenures of other members of the management board are due to end soon. Financial Officer Margus Kaasik's and Electicity and Heat Production Officer Raine Pajo's contracts will end in November. The fourth member of the management board, Margus Rink, will continue as the Energy Sales Manager until April 2016.