With Berlin breathing down its neck, E.ON has taken steps to add further accessibility to its gas distribution network in Germany.

E.ON Gastransport is to combine three of its market areas in the gas pipeline system to simplify network access. Furthermore, the company will make additional pipeline capacities available for importing gas into Germany. The measures are designed to achieve E.ON’s stated goals of improving gas market competition in its domestic market.

As from October 1, 2007, E.ON Gastransport will only have two market areas: one for high-calorific gas (H-gas) and one for low-calorific gas (L-gas). As a result, there will be a nationwide market area uniting large quantities of gas from all of Germany’s major international sources. It will be highly liquid and particularly attractive for shippers and gas traders, E.ON argues.

E.ON Ruhrgas will also invest in pipeline construction at border-crossing points where spare pipeline capacity is persistently below 10% and appropriate spare capacity is available on the other side of the border.

Dr Burckhard Bergmann, of E.ON’s board, commented: We are determined to promote competition on the German gas market and are providing strong stimuli with these steps. The challenge consists in achieving this without impairing security of supply.