Photo: LNG terminal Wilhelmshaven; Illustration. Courtesy of Uniper

Germany: Management concept for chartered FSRUs up to 2024 meets regulatory objectives

The Bundesnetzagentur, German independent higher federal authority, considers the management concept of RWE and Uniper for the floating storage and regasification units (FSRUs) chartered by the federal government at the Brunsbüttel and Wilhelmshaven sites for a transitional period until the end of March 2024 to be in conformity with the regulatory objectives.

“The FSRUs operated by RWE and Uniper will already be helping to secure gas supply in winter 2022/2023. The companies’ management concept is seen to be in conformity with the regulatory framework for a transitional period”, said Klaus Müller, Bundesnetzagentur president.

During the initial phase of the FSRUs’ operation until the end of March 2024, it is planned to only use liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminals for LNG volumes procured by RWE, Uniper and EnBW/VNG.

In the Bundesnetzagentur’s view, the restriction on the statutory right of third parties to access the terminal capacity is objectively justifiable for a limited period in order to guarantee the aim of the security of natural gas supply in Germany and the European Union.

“The fixed supply obligations and swift procurement of alternative supply volumes will make an important contribution to enhancing the security of supply from this coming winter. The potential price-reducing effect is also in the interests of consumers and the general public. Limiting restricted third-party access to a fixed period will minimise competitive disadvantages”, the authority stated.

RWE and Uniper will be operating two FSRUs chartered by the federal government at the Brunsbüttel and Wilhelmshaven sites from the end of 2022 or the beginning of 2023.

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Until the end of March 2024, the volumes of LNG needed to exploit the capacity of the LNG terminals will be procured exclusively by RWE and Uniper and by EnBW and VNG.

The companies will commit to making full use of the unloading slots allocated to them up until the end of March 2024 and procure the supply volumes independently of each other on the global market and will market the volumes brought ashore independently of each other.

Last month, the German government signed an agreement in principle with Fortum and Uniper for a long-term solution that will allow the German State to take full control of Uniper and secure energy supply in the country.

Apart from the two floating LNG terminals in Brunsbüttel und Wilhelmshaven, two more will be located at ports of Lubmin and Stade.

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