MPs powerless to stop Essent takeover

Neither the Dutch government nor MPs can prevent the takeover of the country’s biggest energy concern Essent by its German peer RWE, economic affairs minister Maria van der Hoeven said in an emergency debate on Wednesday evening.

The minister pointed out that the decision to sell Essent rests with the company’s shareholders – six provincial governments and around 140 local councils.
In response, Labour’s energy spokesman Diederik Samsom has called on his party’s local politicians to vote against the move. Labour MPs are against the takeover by RWE which they say does not promote sustainable energy enough.
‘For a clean, reliable and affordable energy supply, it makes more sense to sell just a minority stake to another party,’ Samsom is quoted as saying in today’s Financieele Dagblad.
But local Labour politicians are divided on the issue. In the province of Drenthe, they have reservations about the takeover but in Noord-Brabant – which is the biggest shareholder with a 30% stake – the Labour party is in favour of the RWE deal.
RWE and Essent announced on Monday that they have reached an agreement on a takeover. RWE has bid €9.3bn for the commercial activities of the Dutch utility.
However, according to the economic affairs minister on Wednesday the transaction will require approval from the European Commission. you think Essent should be privatised? Take part in our poll

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