Changing of the guard at Enemalta plc
Mr Kevin Chircop and Mr Sheng Baojie are the new Chairman and Deputy Chairman of Enemalta plc.
The appointments were announced on Tuesday during the Company’s annual general meeting. Outgoing Chairman Ing. Fredrick Azzopardi, who also served as Chief Executive Officer between January and August 2014 and Executive Chairman between August 2014 and December 2017, asked not to be reappointed to be able to focus on new responsibilities in another sector.
The new Chairman, Mr Chircop, has been a member of the Enemalta plc Board of Directors since 2014. He was also part of the Company’s administration, in the post of Executive Director Business Strategy and Projects, between 2014 and 2015, before being appointed Executive Chairman of Enemed Co. Ltd. The new Deputy Chairman, Mr Sheng, has contributed to Enemalta’s strategic partnership with Shanghai Electric Power since its inception in 2013. As part of this ongoing collaboration, he is also the Chairman of Shanghai Electric Power Malta.
During the annual meeting, the Board of Directors thanked the outgoing chairman, Ing. Azzopardi, and the outgoing deputy chairman, Mr Sun Ji, for guiding the Company through an ambitious transformational plan to achieve long-term environmental and financial sustainability. The two directors have been at the helm of Enemalta since it was re-organised into a public limited company in August 2014. Previously, Ing. Azzopardi was the Chief Executive Officer of the entity as a corporation.
This transformation started off with a loss-making corporation burdened with long-standing debts. It has since developed a sustainable electricity generation mix, replacing old, oil-fired power stations with new gas-fired plants, the Malta-Italy Interconnector and grid-connected renewable energy systems, to ensure the country’s security of supply and environmental sustainability.
During the same period, the Company reduced electricity tariffs to some of the lowest levels in Europe, secured the necessary private investment to drastically improve its balance sheet and reined in electricity theft and other non-technical losses. It also implemented a €100-million plus nationwide electricity distribution network upgrade to develop the adequate capacity and flexibility capable of meeting rising demand, and to lower the risks of service interruptions.
As a result of this transformation, Enemalta ended years of losses and registered first profits in 2015. It continued to generate positive results in 2016 and last year as well. Through a new customer-centric approach, the Company also improved its customer services, cutting waiting times for the provision of new electricity services, and the frequency and duration of power cuts, by over 60%.
The Company shareholders, including the Government of Malta and Shanghai Electric Power, and the Board of Directors, welcomed the new Chairman and Deputy Chairman, and expressed their confidence that they will continue leading Enemalta in the same direction in the coming years.
The Board noted that following the transformational process of the last four years, the new headship of the Company can now focus on consolidation, optimisation and increased diversification of its portfolio. Enemalta must also maintain its ongoing investment in the reinforcement of the Company’s electricity generation and distribution infrastructure, to ensure it can continue to meet the country’s rapidly-rising electricity demand, fuelled by growing population figures and rapid economic growth. It must also plan ahead for upcoming technological and environmental requirements and opportunities, including electrification, renewable energy storage, shorepower and cryptocurrency.