Uniper is in need of another hefty cash injection after a previous scheme to help finance the ailing importer was scrapped.
The German government had expect to raise funds to support the nationalised firm through a gas levy on consumers, which has subsequently been ditched following public pressure.
It is now considering whether to pump tens of billions of euros of additional funding into Uniper to weather the European gas crisis amid an elevated threat of blackouts this winter, according to news agency Reuters.
Chancellor Olaf Scholz agreed to nationalise Uniper in September, committing €29bn to prop up Germany’s largest gas importer, and stave off what it feared could be a Lehman-style collapse of energy firms.
The Handelsblatt newspaper – which first reported the need for additional funding – has reported that the total extra support could be up to €40bn.
The additional money is now expected come from a €200bn programme to help households and industry that had envisaged “tailor-made” solutions to support multiple gas importers including Uniper, Sefe and EnBW’s.
Uniper initially turned to the government for support during the summer after Russia cut gas flows to Europe – including the Nord Stream pipeline – in apparent retaliation for sanctions over the war in Ukraine.
Chief executive Klaus Dieter Maubach said in September that the firm made losses of around €100m every day on gas purchases.
It would also lose €10bn in the fourth quarter without funding support from the gas levy.