Federal Government takes over energy company Uniper
The energy company Uniper has decisive significance for Germany’s gas and electricity supply. The company supplies around 200 municipal utilities around the country. As the largest importer of Russian gas, the company has got into an acute emergency as a result of the lack of gas deliveries from Russia and sharp increase in gas prices.
99 percent takeover
For this reason, the Federal Government had already decided on supportive measures on 22 July 2022. The further rise in costs exacerbated the company’s situation to such an extent that the Federal Government has now agreed on an alternative and considerably more comprehensive stabilisation package. The Federal Government is taking over 99 percent of the energy company. This will stabilise Uniper and secure the energy supply for companies, municipal utilities and consumers.
“This step became necessary because the situation has once again significantly changed and become exacerbated since the announcement by the Federal Chancellor on 22 July,” said Federal Minister for Economic Affairs Robert Habeck in a press statement. “Since 1 September, no more gas has been flowing through Nordstream 1. A situation which we have, so far, handled extraordinarily well as a country. The storage levels have reached 90 percent and the gas price, after a brief upward swing, has now fallen from the highest level of 350 euros per megawatt hour in the summer to the current level of under 200 euros.” For Uniper, this has made the situation significantly more dramatic and worse. “Uniper has a 50 percent share of Russian gas in its portfolio and stands for 40 percent of the German gas supply.
This, taken together, forced us into action. Following a market analysis and examination of the alternatives, we made this decision in order to secure the supply security in Germany,” the Minister stressed.
Gas surcharge to come on 1 October
The Uniper takeover currently changes nothing about the introduction of the gas surcharge. The Federal Government has agreed that the gas surcharge will come on 1 October. In principle, the gas surcharge is intended to stabilise system-relevant companies and secure the gas supply in Germany.