Siemens Likely Strategic Investor in Bulgaria's Belene NPP

Business » ENERGY | October 25, 2010, Monday // 19:27| Views: | Comments: 3
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Bulgaria: Siemens Likely Strategic Investor in Bulgaria's Belene NPP Siemens is likely to be the new foreign investor in the Belene plant. Photo by BGNES

German company Siemens is most likely the new strategic investor in Bulgaria's Belene nuclear power plant, sources said.

Bulgaria's PM Borisov on Monday, following Parliament Chair Tsacheva on Sunday, revealed that the government has found a German company that is interested in investing in the Belene NPP.

Neither Tsacheva, nor Borisov, however, revealed the name of the company that is to become the strategic investor in Bulgaria's second nuclear power plant.

They did make it clear, however, that Borisov had talks with the German company in question during his last week's visit to Munich, the capital of the Free State of Bavaria.

A source close to the Bulgarian government wishing to remain anonymous said that Siemens is most likely going to invest in the Belene NPP.

At present, Siemens is one of the subcontractors of Russian company Atomstroyexport, which has been chosen to build the Belene plant.

The headquarters of Siemens in Berlin advised Novinite.com to address Siemens Bulgaria on whether the information can be confirmed or refuted; the respective department of Siemens Bulgaria could not be reached in the late afternoon on Monday.

Last week the CEO of Bulgaria's National Electric Company NEK Krasimir Parvanov said there was a possibility that German energy company RWE could re-consider its decision to withdraw from the Belene project.

In December 2008, RWE was originally selected as a minority shareholder to provide EUR 2 B for the construction of Belene (in exchange for a 49% stake). However, it pulled out in the fall of 2009.

The Bulgarian government is expected to reveal this or next week who the strategic investor in Belene will be.

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Tags: Belene Nuclear Power Plant, Belene NPP, Nuclear Power Plant, Russia, Bavaria, Germany, Angela Merkel, German Chancellor, Boyko Borisov, Rosatom, Atomstroyexport, RWE, Foreign investors, NEK, Siemens
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» To the forumComments (3)
#3
Highlander - 26 Oct 2010 // 16:06:19

Dr.Faust, I certain agree with your comment- and I might have misjudged the situation. The Board of Directors/CEO is of course entitled to put confidentiality restrictions on business deals.
But the question is : Would Siemens do it in a case like this ? The investments and the project have to be presented in the "public sphere" at some stage. It is a substantial project, even for Siemens, with a final budget of 7 bill euro + and longterm committment.

If the intention to invest is real and well founded, the major shareholders would have to be informed and they are (if Siemens considers a contract with Bulgaria), but probably with confidentiality clauses for some time.But it is quite unusual, because this is in the heartland of EU's future energy policy and Siemens has dedicated itself to green, sustainable/renewable energy projects f.ex. wind farms or hydro plants.

But I still think Siemens is not even close to "the intent" of an investment yet, and light-years away from a final decision. Bulgarian authorities are repeating old sins in this case
by releasing news that are not real. We remember the previous government endless statements of unblocked EU funds - tomorrow or the day after tomorrow for sure the funds will be available.

If it is a typical Bulgarian hoax or media stunt to "blackmail" Siemens, for sure the company would think twice before investing a cent in a project where Bulgarian authorities are major stakeholders.

#2
DrFaust - 26 Oct 2010 // 08:16:44

Highlander,

'Not even the major shareholders in Siemens have been notified about a potential significant investment in Belene.'

I think you are misjudging the situation. Siemens has a board of directors that is fully entitled to run the business without 'notifying the major shareholders' about any potential investments in advance.

'Which global company would leave the announcement to an insignificant department like Siemens Bulgaria?'

The answer is obvious, and that's why it seems also obvious that Siemens just didn't want to comment on it and in order to get rid of the SNA journalists told them to ask Siemens Bulgaria (which of course is also not available for a statement).

I am amazed by the fact how major politicians create the impression that they have already a deal whereas it seems clear that the negotiations are in a very early stage and the outcome of the whole thing is still doubtful. Seems they haven't learned anything from the withdrawal of RWE in 2008.

By the way, SNA, the headquarter of Siemens AG is in Munich. A part of the international business of Siemens is coordinated from the Berlin office, but the official seat of the company is Munich.

#1
Highlander - 25 Oct 2010 // 21:10:21

More and more mysterious.
Not even the major shareholders in Siemens have been notified about a potential
significant investment in Belene. Which global company would leave the announcement
to an insignificant department like Siemens Bulgaria ?

Have we got a rollover from "New Jerusalem" or F1 ?

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