VERBUND-E.ON Cooperation Strengthens Domestic Hydroelectric Power Industry
Chairman of the VERBUND Board of Management Hans Haider absolutely rejects any censure of the establishment of a management company for the joint operation of the hydroelectric power plants with the German E.ON.
The cooperation offers not only economic but also essential ecological benefits. A weakening of the Austria anti-nuclear energy policy, additional imports of nuclear power, or a sellout of the water rights are out of the question.
The exclusive job of European Hydro Power EHP, the management company which is in the process of being established, is the optimal use and operation of the hydroelectric power plants of Austrian Hydro Power AHP and E.ON Wasserkraft GmbH. VERBUND expects not only economic benefits due to savings potentials in the amount of annually about 340 million ATS (25 million Euro) but also ecological advantages. Hydroelectric power will be able to better hold its ground in the liberalized European market – also versus the nuclear power industry.
EHP as operating company will be under Austrian management and headquartered in Salzburg, although it will not be the owner of the power plants. The hydroelectric power plants will remain under the ownership of the respective parent companies. The water rights will not change hands either. Thus E.ON does not gain any power over the Austrian water resources.
The joint operation of the hydroelectric power plants with E.ON does not jeopardize VERBUND’s environmentally-oriented corporate policy. VERBUND considers this successful cooperation agreement another important step on the road to an environmentally beneficial but also competitive hydroelectric power group of international calibre.