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Frankfurt (AFP) July 30, 2012
German power group EnBW said Monday it will not join other utility companies in filing a complaint with Germany's top court over compensation for Berlin's decision to abandon nuclear power.
"Following intensive examination and consideration of the relevant viewpoints, EnBW has decided not to file a constitutional complaint" against the move, the group said in a statement.
Rival groups E.ON, RWE and Vattenfall are all suing the government, arguing that the nuclear exit decision has harmed their proprietary rights because they are being forced to shut down their profitable large-scale power plants and also pay a tax on the reactors' fuel for their remaining lifespan.
The companies insist their legal action is not about the pull-out from nuclear energy per se, which is largely the will of the German population, but about the lack of compensation for the companies affected by the energy policy U-turn.
All companies have seen profits fall sharply owing to the shutdown of power plants as part of Germany's policy to abandon nuclear energy in the wake of the nuclear disaster in Fukushima, Japan.
E.ON, the country's biggest power utility, has said it wants at least 8.0 billion euros ($9.8 billion) in compensation.
EnBW said it shared the opinion of its rivals. But because it is 98-percent publicly owned, it cannot sue the government.
"We are feeling the financial effects of the move as much as E.ON, RWE and Vattenfall are. We are therefore confident that, if the complaints are successful, the constitutional court will also take EnBW's interests into account when it makes its ruling," the statement said.
That would be the only way to avoid any competitive distortions arising from the rulings, EnBW argued.
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