Ulster Unionist Party leader Reg Empey believes the British government should step in and prevent the Irish Republic’s Electricity Supply Board (ESB) if it puts in a bid to take over Northern Ireland Electricity.
The problem is that, at the moment, Northern Ireland Electricity’s parent company Viridian is the subject of a €2.4 billion takeover by Bahrain investment bank Arcapita and Empey fears the ESB might consider expanding its island business by buying stakes in Viridian if they come available.
Empey has warned that there would be political consequences if the semi-state ESB company, which is owned by the Irish Government, were to take over Northern Ireland Electricity. Unfortunately, the report doesn’t elaborate on what these consequences could be. Or perhaps the UUP, in an effort to save NIE from the vagaries of the free market, is now in favour of renationalising the company?