Centrica has announced plans to increase its share in Belgian generation and supply company SPE to 51 per cent by buying GDF’s 25.5 per cent shareholding for €515m.

Centrica

has announced plans to increase its share in Belgian generation and supply company

SPE

to 51 per cent by buying GDF’s 25.5 per cent shareholding for €515m (approximately £406m).

SPE is the second largest power generation company in Belgium with around 1.6GW of gas-fired production capacity.

Its earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation are approximately €240m (£189m) a year and its profit before tax for the year ending 31 December 2007, was €39m (about £30m).

The completion of the transaction is scheduled to take place in September, when Centrica will pay GDF in cash.