Decision to sell stakes in electricity firms attractive for investors – Tymoshenko
"We decided to launch a fair privatization of our power engineering..."
Prime Minister of Ukraine Yulia Tymoshenko believes that the government’s decision to sell stakes of 60 percent plus one share in four electricity firms, including the country`s largest electricity producer, Dniproenergo, is attractive for investors.
According to an UNIAN correspondent, Yulia Tymoshenko expressed this opinion at a meeting with diplomatic corps representatives, accredited in Ukraine.
“Yesterday we decided to launch a fair privatization of our power engineering. This plan, it seems to me, will interest all serious investors, which want to come and work in this sphere”, Yulia Tymoshenko said.
At the same time, the Prime Minister disclosed that two out of the four electricity firms were passed to private hands by means of artificial schemes in previous years. “These companies are Dniproenergo and Skhidenergo. I would not like that such companies be passed without any supervision into hands of people, who have never been busy with this direction, but use these companies to receive temporary but big profit, after which this companies remain ruined”, she added.
As UNIAN reported earlier, the privatization of the four firms, which also include Donbassenergo, Zakhidenergo and Centrenergo, are in addition to the government`s intention to sell six other, smaller regional energy companies, for which it hopes to get $600 million.
The government gave no further details, and it is up to the State Property Fund, a privatization agency, to draw up the conditions of the tenders and set starting prices.
It is unclear when and how exactly the government could go ahead with Dniproenergo`s privatization, as a court case over its shareholder structure is in progress.
Ukraine`s richest man, Rinat Akhmetov, owns a stake via a chain of subsidiaries of his System Capital Management holding company. According to Reuters, last year, under the previous government of Viktor Yanukovich, with whom Akhmetov has close ties, Dniproenergo shareholders voted to increase its share capital, which effectively diluted the government`s stake to 50 percent plus one share and raised Akhmetov`s stake to possibly 40 percent.
Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko, then in opposition, criticized the deal and since coming into government after a September election, a regional court annulled it, a decision the country`s highest financial court is now reviewing.
Tymoshenko hopes to reap much more than the planned $1.6 billion in revenues from privatization.