In contrast to some neighbouring countries, the energy sector in Switzerland is still heavily influenced by the public sector. While the liberalisation of the electricity market approved by parliament in 2007 has not yet been completed, the energy turnaround decided on after the reactor accident in Fukushima already poses another major challenge. The effects on the value added by the players in the energy sector are manifold. Due to the increasing interdependence, the energy sector includes not only the traditional energy companies but also companies in the waste disposal sector (wastewater treatment & waste incineration).

In some EU countries, especially in Germany, the expansion of renewable energy capacity is already well advanced thanks to generous subsidies. The resulting price collapse on the electricity market is putting many power plant operators in Switzerland under economic pressure, which will continue in the coming years. Numerous projects in this area are therefore currently being postponed. In the case of existing hydroelectric power plants, the decline in the price of electricity is also leading to a distribution battle between the energy suppliers and the mountain cantons. The focus is on the water rate (Wasserzins), i.e. the price that the suppliers have to pay for the use of the water to the cantons where hydropower is located.

Energy Sector Overview