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Austria Extends $2 Billion Credit to Keep Lights on in Vienna

  • Vienna’s municipal power utility has immediate access to loans
  • Government instructs E-Control to assess other utilities needs
Vienna at night.

Vienna at night.

Photographer: Sergey Alimov/Getty Images

Austria approved a 2 billion euro ($2 billion) loan for Vienna’s municipal utility after spiking energy prices forced the company to provide more collateral to keep the lights on in the capital.

Wien Energie GmbH, the city-owned utility serving 2 million people, will get access to the credit facility as Austrian authorities probe the trades leading to its cash crunch, Finance Minister Magnus Brunner said at a briefing on Wednesday. The loan is on the low end of potential financing needs, which swelled to as high as $6 billion before European benchmark power prices slumped earlier this week.