Changes in the ownership structure of the Slovak gas company SPP

2013/09/13

On 4 September the Slovak prime minister, Robert Fico announced an agreement between the government and Energeticky a prumyslovy holding (EPH), under which the state will take over 49% of the company’s shares worth 59 million euro and managerial control in Slovensky plynarensky priemysel (SPP), the main gas importer in Slovakia. Owing to this transaction, the state will become the sole owner of SPP. The gas infrastructural companies previously controlled by SPP are to be transferred to a new entity, in which SPP will keep 51% of shares. Remaining shares together with managerial control will be held by EPH. This common SPP and EPH business will own companies which posses the domestic network of gas distribution (SPP – distribucia), gas storage facilities (SPP Storage) and the Slovak section of the Brotherhood gas pipeline which supplies the majority of Russian gas to the EU market (Eustream). At the beginning of this year EPH, which is owned by two Czech businessmen and the Slovak finance group J&T, has bought 49% of the SPP shares together with managerial rights for 2.6 billion euro from E.ON Ruhrgas and GDF Suez. Slovakia, which uses 5.2 billion m3 of gas annually, imports it mainly from Russia under a 20-year contract signed with Gazprom Export in 2008. Last year SPP paid US$429 for 1000 m3 gas, slightly above the average in the EU.

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