Cooperation Talks Germany's RWE Mulls Gazprom as Major Shareholder

German energy firm RWE and Gazprom, Russia's largest company, have been talking about possible link-ups in the future that could include Gazprom buying a strategic stake in the company, SPIEGEL has learned.  

Tough years ahead for RWE. Now CEO Jürgen Großmann is considering linking up with Gazprom, sources say.
DPA

Tough years ahead for RWE. Now CEO Jürgen Großmann is considering linking up with Gazprom, sources say.


German energy firm RWE and Gazprom, Russia's largest company, are considering far-reaching cooperation and RWE could imagine Gazprom buying a major stake n it.

RWE head Jürgen Grossmann met Gazprom CEO Alexei Miller in Paris on Friday to discuss gas supply contracts but also the possibility of future link-ups, SPIEGEL has learned.

Grossmann told confidants after the meeting that he could imagine the Russian giant taking a long-term major stake in the company. He aims to inform his supervisory board of the outcome of the negotiations in early August.

Gazprom has supplied the German company with gas for years.

Rising Costs

Germany's decision to stop using atomic power by 2022 has left RWE in a difficult position. Grossmann has said that Berlin's decision to accelerate its nuclear power exit plans would leave the firm facing "several billions" of unexpected costs over the coming years. Adding to its costs, the German firm, a leading CO2 producer, will have to buy emissions permits starting next January.

Gazprom also held talks with German energy firm E.on's CEO Johannes Teyssen on July 7 to discuss similar issues. However, relations between the two managers are said to be strained because of a long-standing conflict about high Russian gas prices.

jas -- Der Spiegel and wire reports

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