Gazprom, RWE eye power plant joint venture
Russian gas giant Gazprom and German utilities group RWE said on Thursday they are looking to form a strategic partnership to construct jointly gas and coal power plants in Europe.
"The power industry is one of the priorities of Gazprom in Europe," Gazprom's chief executive officer Alexei Miller said in a statement after inking with RWE boss Juergen Grossmann a provisional agreement in Rome.
"The signed memorandum provides RWE with exclusive rights for negotiations with Gazprom on the implementation of energy projects in Germany, UK and the Benelux countries for a period of three months," Miller said.
"This MoU (memorandum of understanding), when put into commercial reality, could secure a safe and competitive natural gas supply to RWE," Grossmann said.
"It can furthermore provide for potential partnerships in coal and gas fired power plants in and outside of Germany and thus lead to mutually fruitful common growth opportunities," he said.
The announcement comes ahead of talks in Hanover, northern Germany on Monday and Tuesday between Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and Chancellor Angela Merkel.
Commercial ties between the two counties have grown strongly in recent years despite criticism of Russia's human rights record and accusations that Moscow uses state-controlled Gazprom for political purposes.
© 2011 AFP