Uniper has received billions in financial support from the German government as a result of rising gas and electricity prices after the Russian war in Ukraine.
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The German government on Wednesday approved the nationalization of utilities Uniper as it strives to keep the industry afloat in the wake of a global energy crisis.
I already accepted in July to rescue of the major gas importer with 15 billion euros ($14.95 billion) bailout deal, state now buys Finland’s 56% stake Fortune for 0.5 billion euros. The German state will own approximately 98.5% of Uniper.
“Since the stabilization package for Uniper was agreed in July, Uniper’s situation has deteriorated rapidly and significantly; as such, new measures have been agreed to resolve the situation,” Fortum announced in a statement Wednesday morning.
Uniper is Germany’s largest gas importer and is under pressure from greatly reduced gas flows from Russia, causing prices to rise.
Russian state energy company Gazprom earlier this month gas flow to Europe suspended indefinitely via the Nord Stream 1 pipeline, a move Uniper CEO Klaus-Dieter Maubach told CNBC would exacerbate the company’s struggles.
Fortum will deconsolidate Uniper from the third quarter of 2022, the company said on Wednesday, while Fortum’s EUR 4 billion loan to Uniper will be repaid and the Finnish company released from a parent company guarantee of EUR 4 billion.
“Under the current conditions in the European energy markets and given the gravity of Uniper’s situation, the divestment of Uniper is the right step, not only for Uniper but also for Fortum,” said Fortum CEO Markus Rauramo.
“The role of gas in Europe has fundamentally changed since Russia attacked Ukraine, and so has the prospects for a gas-rich portfolio. As a result, the business case for an integrated group is no longer viable.”
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