Verband kommunaler Unternehmen e.V.
The Verband kommunaler Unternehmen e.V. (VKU) is the German Association of Local Utilities of municipally determined infrastructure undertakings and economic enterprises. These are companies that provide services of general interest in Germany within the framework of local self-government. Working in the context of an economic system driven by competition, they serve the interests of citizens by maintaining a service structure that counteracts the forces of market concentration and forms an integral part of Germany's social market economy.
The VKU is the association for local public utilities, which do not primarily pursue private commercial objectives but are guided by public welfare obligations. In our democratic system, they operate under local self-administration to serve "citizen value", i.e. to meet the needs of the local community. The type of capital they form and secure is a community-oriented asset." (Resolution of the VKU Executive Committee of 26 February 2008).
The VKU represents the interests of the local public utility sector in Germany, which includes both supply and disposal services. Founded in 1949, this Association of Local Utilities has its headquarters in Berlin. In July 2011 the VKU moved into the association's new headquarters in the political center of the capital. It also runs an EU representation in Brussels. Furthermore the VKU is represented at federal state level with local offices. The 1,458 member companies organized within the VKU are primarily active in the fields of energy supply, water supply and sewage, waste management, municipal cleaning and telecommunication.
We bring together the interests of the local utilities and influence the processes of policy-making and law-making. We formulate ideas on the future of the local utility sector and offer our members a broad range of support services.