It’s not just consumers who are struggling with high energy prices, the current situation is also hitting suppliers hard. As the “Handelsblatt” reports, more and more municipal utilities and energy companies are getting into payment difficulties.

Striking: According to the report, several energy suppliers have already applied for possible financial support for security payments from the federal government – the financial volume is in the double-digit billions.

Tobias Federico from the market research company Energy Brainpool warns in the “Handelsblatt”: “The energy crisis is already of the same dimensions as the crisis that caused the Lehman Brothers bankruptcy.”

A vicious circle develops, according to Federico. The government has to support more and more corporations with billions so that they can still supply the expensive energy at all. And the customers must also be supported so that they can still pay for the expensive energy.

It is true that many suppliers have long-term purchasing contracts and thus bought energy before the crisis. Nevertheless, the companies also procure electricity and gas in short-term trading. And the current prices are many times higher. Because electricity and gas contracts with the company’s own customers are often subject to fixed prices, the purchase prices cannot be given one-to-one. As a result, costs are incurred that some providers can hardly bear.

In addition to their own financial worries, Stadtwerke is currently experiencing a massive increase in the number of customer calls who can no longer pay their bills and are in despair. “They scream, they cry, some even threaten suicide because they no longer know how to pay their bills,” the “Handelsblatt” quotes a sales manager of a medium-sized municipal utility.

Simply let nuclear reactors continue to run and thus get energy prices under control again? Unfortunately, it’s not that easy and that party ideology isn’t helpful here, as the talk round at “hard but fair” shows.

Prime Minister Markus Söder (CSU) caused a stir with statements about a possible winter blackout. Several districts are already preparing for such a scenario.

The gas importer Uniper has defended its controversial sponsorship activities. The money is handled “as carefully and consciously as possible,” said Uniper boss Klaus-Dieter Maubach. At the same time, he does not want to rule out that Uniper will also cause criticism in the near future.