VERBUND is still interested in a quick liberalization and opening of the Austrian electricity market and supports the deadline of 10/1/2001 for liberalization, which has been proposed by the Federal Government. The complete opening of the market - as soon as possible - is a prerequisite for a fair and equal competitive situation in the electricity industry.
The fact that VERBUND is willing to hold talks with other suppliers to find a joint solution is no delaying tactics. The sole intention is to support and secure the liberalization and thus the opening of the electricity market in Austria. Thanks to the measures taken by the company in the past, VERBUND is prepared very well for competition, which also shows in the result of financial 1999, when VERBUND already participated in the competition at about 70 %. If the talks held within the scope of the Austrian Electricity Industry Association fail to bring forth a result acceptable for us, we shall refuse to take such "joint" action, says Mr. Hans Haider, the head of VERBUND.