GET Baltic Gas Exchange to become part of EEX group

(Reuters) - The European Energy Exchange (EEX) on Thursday said its acquisition of 66% of the shares of smaller sector peer GET Baltic was approved by GET's owner, Amber Grid, paving the way for EEX to extend its eastwards reach.

Next up, Amber Grid shareholders will vote on transferring the majority stake in the Baltic states and Finland gas bourse to EEX, part of Deutsche Boerse, at their next annual general meeting on April 7, EEX said in a statement.

Amber Grid is Lithuania's pipeline grid operator.

"The transaction will enhance EEX’s strong position as European natural gas trading operator and will further improve liquidity on gas markets," said the chief executive of EEX, Peter Reitz.

The two companies plan to offer a harmonized European gas trading platform that includes both short-term and long-term products as well as clearing services, the statement said.

EEX more than doubled volumes across its gas markets last year as operators hedged purchases amid supply worries, high prices and volatility resulting from the drop in Russian gas exports to the West after Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

GET Baltic traded 7 terawatt hours (TWh) of gas in 2022, equating to 17% of total gas consumed in the Baltic and Finnish markets that year, improving on a share of 12% in 2021.

A related note on GET Baltic's website said that the purpose of selecting a strategic partner was to attract more market participants, "leading to more competition, liquidity and lower gas prices."

The transaction would be finalized in May or June.

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