Energias de Portugal (EDP) has rejected a takeover bid for its outstanding shares from China Three Gorges (Europe) SA.

EDP says that the €9.1 billion bid undervalues its operations and that it plans to issue a more detailed response on the offer and its terms “in due course”.

In a statement to the Portuguese stock exchange, EDP said: “The Executive Board of Directors considers that the price offered does not adequately reflect the value of EDP and that the implied offer premium is low considering what is customary for European utilities where the offeror has acquired control.”

China Three Gorges launched the all-cash offer on May 11 for the 76.7 per cent of EDP that it does not already own. The €3.26-per-share offer values the whole group at €11.8 billion.

Analysts expect China Three Gorges to improve its offer. Acquiring control of EDP would bolster the Chinese firm’s efforts to expand abroad and deepen its access to markets in Europe, the USA and Brazil.