This is a rather important report for the European energy sector, which has been the subject of much debate recently.
Poland has opted for a receivership
The first report from the Polish side came from the Polish daily rp.pl and was then confirmed by the Polish government. The government will take over the Polish assets of the Russian gas company Gazprom. Specifically, a stake in EuRoPol Gaz, the operator of the 684 kilometers Polish section of the Yamal-Europe gas pipeline
Gazprom had a 48% stake in EuRoPol Gaz. The other shareholder is the Polish company PGNiG with 48% and then Gas Trading, which belongs to PKN Orlen, with 4%.
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However, according to the constitution, the Polish government cannot simply expropriate a company. So it decided to take the Gazprom subsidiary into receivership. The aim is to ensure the safety of critical gas transport infrastructure and to limit the influence of the Russian capital.
Germany has reacted similarly
Shortly afterward, the German government announced that it would nationalize Gazprom’s former subsidiary Securing Energy for Europe (SEFE).
Germany has nationalized the gas company Securing Energy for Europe (SEFE), formerly a subsidiary of Russian company Gazprom, citing impending bankruptcy that could disrupt Germany's energy supplies. https://t.co/HtMWdbA239
— dpa news agency (@dpa_intl) November 14, 2022
The German Ministry of Economic Affairs justified the move on the grounds of the risk of the company’s insolvency, which could then threaten the security of the energy supply in Germany.
“To avert this risk and to maintain SEFE’s operational activities, we are now implementing a change of ownership. This will stabilize the company.”
The company has been in a bad way for some time. For the last few months, it has been under the management of the Federal Agency and now the government is taking over the entire company. The company has a market share of around 20% in Germany and cannot go bankrupt, because that would be a big hit for Germany.
This is not the first time that Germany has decided to intervene and take a stake in an energy company. Recently, we informed you that the government decided to take over part of Uniper, which is the largest importer of Russian gas into Germany and has been in existential difficulties due to supply restrictions.
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