E.ON plans to upgrade network; investment in wind energy
Dec 14, 2006, 15:13 GMT
Berlin - Europe's biggest utilities group E.ON AG said Thursday it is spending 25.3 billion euros (33.4 billion dollars) over the next three years aimed at modernizing its power network, building new plants and investing in alternative energy.
This includes new facilities in its domestic German market and Britain as well as continuing with the construction of new power plants in Italy, the Netherlands and Eastern Europe and pressing on with its hostile takeover bid for Spanish energy giant, Endessa SA.
Along with this, Dusseldorf-based E.ON is planning several wind energy projects, in particular offshore in the United Kingdom, Germany and northern Europe as well as a biomass power plant.
'Our high level of investment will further enhance the security of power and natural gas supplies,' said E.ON chief Wulf Bernotat announcing the rolling investment programme.
'At the same time, our new power stations will increase the supply of electricity in our markets and serve to further spur competition,' he said.
E.ON said that it had earmarked a total of 5.7 billion euros for upgrading and expanding its power network, notably in Germany.
The group's announcement of its new investment plan comes in the wake of criticism of the German utility group following blackouts across much of western Europe last month.
Releasing its investment plan, E.ON said it was to 'systematically pursue' its 37.1 billion euros bid for Spain's Endesa as part of moves to boost its shareholdings in energy companies including in the Yushno Russkoye gas field in western Siberia.
E.ON has been gradually edging its way in recent weeks to winning control of Endesa as it manages to overcome a series of bureaucratic hurdles to its takeover battle for Spain's largest power company.
In addition to continuing construction on power plants in Germany, E.ON said that it is proposing a hard-coal fired generating unit and hard-coal fired test unit in the country.
German-based E.ON said that a 1,200 MW gas-fired plant and a 1,600 MW coal-fired plant are planned for Britain.© 2006 dpa - Deutsche Presse-Agentur