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Contract signed for GASPOOL and NetConnect merger

Published by , Assistant Editor
LNG Industry,

On 21 April 2021, the co-operation contract, which provides for the merger of the two gas market areas GASPOOL and NetConnect Germany to form the Trading Hub Europe (THE) market area, was signed in Berlin, Germany.

Since November 2017, the transmission system operators (TSOs) have been working on the details of the new nation-wide market area, which is to become one of the most attractive and liquid gas trading hubs in Europe. "The signing of the co-operation agreement marks a major milestone in this project. We now have a sound basis for the new joint THE market area, which will start trading on 1 October 2021," said Jürgen Fuhlrott from the project team.

In addition to the co-operation contract, the contracts for the merger of the two market area managers GASPOOL Balancing Services GmbH and NetConnect Germany GmbH to form Trading Hub Europe GmbH were also signed. After entry in the commercial register, Trading Hub Europe GmbH will take over management of the GASPOOL and NetConnect Germany market areas until 1 October 2021 and subsequently become the operator of the new THE market area from 1 October 2021.

Intensive work is currently underway to push ahead with the operational implementation of the new market area. This work has included extensive IT system upgrades, which will undergo thorough testing over the coming weeks. "We are looking forward to the launch of THE with a great deal of confidence. The close co-operation of the TSOs and the market area managers has allowed us to take today’s step," said Bianca Dittmann, another member of the project team. "The continuous and constructive dialogue with the market participants and the Federal Network Agency has also been a key success factor."

THE will benefit shippers and end users, network operators and balancing group managers alike. Due to its central location in the heart of Europe, the new Germany-wide market area will act as an international hub linking other European gas markets.

Trading Hub Europe GmbH will operate from its two offices in Berlin and Ratingen. The launch date for the nationwide market area is 1 October 2021. The high-pressure pipeline network in the new market area will have a total length of around 40 000 km and connect more than 700 downstream networks.

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