Czech energy company Energetický a průmyslový (EPH) and its non-operational financial partner PPF Investments (PPFI) have acquired Swedish energy giant Vattenfall’s lignite assets in Germany.

The sale follows approval by the European Commission upon assessing impact on competition in the markets for the excavation and supply of lignite; supply of pulverized lignite in Germany; and generation and wholesale supply of electricity.

EU said that the deal will not adversely affect competition in the relevant markets.

The acquisition is part of EPH’s effort to extend its presence and long-standing expertise in the region.

As per the deal signed earlier, Vattenfall has sold its assets including power plants Jänschwalde, Boxberg, Schwarze Pumpe, Lippendorf block R as well as open cast mines Jänschwalde, Nochten, Welzow-Süd, and Reichwalde. It also sold the recently closed mine Cottbus Nord.

The power plants have a combined power generation capacity of 8000MW with total 7,500 employees.

The divestment is part of Vattenfall's plan to focus on further developing in wind, district heating, distribution networks and customer-centric energy services while reducing CO2 emission.

Vattenfall president and CEO Magnus Hall earlier said: "This divestment of our lignite assets is good strategically but also financially given current and expected market conditions. We are now accelerating our shift towards a more sustainable production.”

EPH earlier said the deal involves acquiring over €3.4bn ($3.8bn) worth of assets and €2bn in liabilities and provisions.