E.ON Romania wants to raise up electricity and natural gas prices by 15 percent

Publish date: 17-12-2009
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German electricity company E.ON has asked the National Energy Regulation Authority (ANRE) for a 15 percent raise of the price of natural gas and a 12 percent hike of the price of electric energy, in 2010, despite admitting that the demands are unrealistic and that it does not expect them to be approved, Mediafax informs. 'We hope to find together with ANRE a solution that would be to the advantage of all parties, a fair compromise for all sides. In my opinion maintaining the prices wouldn't be a fair compromise,' Frank Hajdinjak, the general director of E.ON Romania, stated yesterday during a press conference.

In previous years the German group registered losses of RON 700 M from natural gases and RON 80 M from electricity, amount that could be recovered through price hikes, in the company officials' opinion. 'We know that these price hikes that we are asking the ANRE for are unrealistic in the current context and that we won't obtain them. We only want the ANRE to give us what it promised in what concerns the profit margins from electricity and natural gas. It didn't do that and for that reason our losses grow on a yearly basis,' Hajdinjak added.

Moreover, the company will invest EUR 60 M in Romania next year in order to modernize the electricity networks, a value that is similar to the one registered this year, and won't offer dividends because it has not yet reached the profitability rate that the shareholders expect, the company leadership informs.

'Since 2005 back when Electrica Moldova and Distrigaz Nord were privatized we have invested RON 1.2 bln in Romania. We did not pay dividends in Romania, we invested. (...) We cannot say when we'll start paying dividends in Romania. We will continue to invest here in the following years but we need stable political, economic and regulatory environments,' Hajdinjak said. He added that German group E.ON, the company's majority shareholder, will maintain its investments in Romania if the profitability rate will be the one expected, something that did not happen for the last 4 years.

In 2005 E.ON bought from the state the Electrica Moldova and Distrigaz Nord companies. The company will continue to reduce its number of employees in 2010 after it sacked approximately 1,100 this year.

'We will reduce the number of employees next year too, through various methods such as externalization, forming new subsidiaries and the continual optimization of our business in Romania. At the end of December 2009 E.ON Romania Group will have 7,300 employees,' Hajdinjak stated. In September Hajdinjak stated that the Group will have approximately 6,500 employees in 2012.

E.ON wants majority share package within EUR 1.2 bln energy project in Braila

E.ON expects to hold the majority share package within the energy project in Braila, a project evaluated at EUR 1.2 bln and developed along with Enel (Italy) and state-owned Termoelectrica.

'We will most likely hold the majority share package within this 800 MW project. Enel's and Termoelectrica's participations are still negotiated,' Frank Hajdinjak stated on Wednesday in a press conference. The investment in this project is approximately EUR 200 M higher than the costs initially announced in 2008. The feasibility study has been completed.


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