Government in talks about merging TSOs into “German Grid Corporation” – media
The German government is considering merging the country's four transmission system operators (TSOs) into a single “German Grid Corporation,” news agency Bloomberg reported. The government is in talks with Dutch authorities about a takeover of grid operator Tennet for more than 20 billion euros and reportedly has also reached out to operators 50 Hertz, Transnet BW and Amprion. “The traffic light coalition under chancellor Olaf Scholz regards the decision by [former chancellor] Angela Merkel to privatise electricity grids as wrong,” the article said. It had resulted in fragmented responsibilities and slow expansion, with the costs for building out transmission lines estimated at 50 billion euros. However, the possible TSO merger would not mean that the government takes ownership of the grid, with the preferred option being a single entity that is primarily privately owned, according to the article.
The German power grid is in urgent need of comprehensive modernisation and expansion, especially to transmit wind power generated in the north to industrial centres in the south. However, many of the new lines are behind schedule because of long planning procedures. Most European countries have a single TSO that operates the national grid. The German government already has a minority stake in grid operator 50 Hertz, via the state-owned investment bank KfW.