EDF head attacks Iberdrola's complaint as "groundless"

29th February 2008, Comments 0 comments

A complaint lodged with the European Commission by Spanish power firm Iberdrola over EDF's ownership structure is "groundless," Pierre Gadonneix, the chairman and chief executive of the French energy giant, argued Thursday.

29 February 2008

MADRID – A complaint lodged with the European Commission by Spanish power firm Iberdrola over EDF's ownership structure is "groundless," Pierre Gadonneix, the chairman and chief executive of the French energy giant, argued Thursday.

Speaking on a French radio station, Gadonneix said that Iberdrola's complaint "makes no sense" because EDF has yet to decide whether to launch a takeover bid for the Spanish company in spite of escalating rumours that it is planning to do so. On Tuesday, Iberdrola filed the case with the European Commission alleging that the French state's almost 85-percent stake in EDF constitutes a "golden share" that protects the company from takeovers and undermines competition in the common market.

"Currently, I can't think of any reason to complain because we have not taken any decision," the boss of Europe's largest utility company said.

Earlier this month EDF confirmed that it had been in talks with Spanish construction group ACS, an Iberdrola shareholder, over entering the Spanish electricity sector. However, yesterday Gadonneix assured he would make no such move without first consulting Spanish regulators.

[Copyright EL PAÍS / ANGELES ESPINOSA 2008]

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