“All preparatory stages for the establishment of the company have already been cleared. We have signed the founding documents with the head of Finland’s gas company today. The shareholders’ meeting, which set up the company and approved its by-laws, took place today,” Viktoras Valentukevičius, Lietuvos Dujos CEO, said at a news conference in Vilnius on Friday.
The natural gas exchange should launch trade right after the New Year, he said.
Gasum CEO Antero Jannes noted that Finland’s gas market was very similar to Lithuania’s gas market.
“We intend to introduce this platform in other Baltic countries as well; the discussions with Latvians and Estonians have already been started,” he said adding that the purpose of those measures was to create a homogeneous gas market in the Baltic region.
Lietuvos Dujos will own 66 percent of shares of the joint venture GET Baltic (Gas Electronic Trade Baltic), and Gasum will hold the remaining 34 percent.
GET Baltic has an authorized capital of 2 million litas (EUR 0.58m), including 1.32 million litas contributed by Lietuvos Dujos.
Baltpool, a company owned by the electricity transmission system operator Litgrid, launched a natural gas exchange in Lithuania in early March, but no trading is taking place on it yet.
Russia's Gazprom is currently the only gas supplier to Lithuania, but Baltpool says that the launch of the exchange will create a competitive natural gas market and later, if a gas link with Poland or an LNG terminal in Klaipėda are built, it will also become a marketplace for trade in gas coming from other sources.
Germany's E.ON Ruhrgas International owns 38.9 percent of Lietuvos Dujos, and Russia's Gazprom holds a 37.06 percent stake. The Lithuanian Energy Ministry owns 17.7 percent.
Lietuvos Dujos is quoted on the blue-chip Main List of the NASDAQ OMX Vilnius stock exchange.