Municipal Utilities in NRW to Compete with Major German Utilities?

The Minister of Economic Affairs of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia, Christa Thoben (CDU), wants to amend the Munipical Code (Gemeindeordnung) so as to allow municipal utilities to sell electricity and gas outside their present region and to hold shares in other utilities.

By giving municipal utilities more economic freedom, Mrs Thoben intends to enhance competition in the German gas and electricity market, which is still dominated by the four major German utilities, RWE AG, E.ON AG, EnBW AG and Vattenfall Europe AG.

In return for the easement of legal regulations, municipal utilities shall, however, give up certain privileges, e.g. the benefit of getting loans at reduced rates of interest, as well as certain state guarantees.

Prof. Dr. Marti Burgi has rendered an expert opinion on underlying legal questions. It has meanwhile been published as a book under the title “Neuer Ordnungsrahmen für die energiewirtschaftliche Betätigung der Kommunen”.

Sources: Rheinische Post and Press Release Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia

Print This Post Print This Post