Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko is going to put into effect the privatization of a number of facilities, “disregarding the presidential decree,” after President Viktor Yushchenko banned their privatization. According to Itar-Tass, Tymoshenko said this in an interview with Kyiv-based ICTV TV Channel.

“I can tell you that those senseless decrees will not change anything. I think the privatization of those facilities will take place within the time limits set by the government, because all those decrees are just illegal,” Tymoshenko stressed. In her opinion, privatization is being suspended for the purpose of disrupting the holding of a European football championship in Ukraine in 2012 and the payment of bank deposits to former clients of the USSR Sberbank (Savings Bank). According to her information, 20 companies have been registered already for taking part in the privatization of the Odessa Port Factory. She believes this is evidence of “the highest mark given to the preparation of the facility for privatization.”

The day before Alexander Turchynov, first vice premier of Ukraine, also criticized Yushchenko’s stand on the privatization of the Odessa Port Factory. “In my opinion, this is an especially aggressive provocation against the government and against Ukraine,” he said. In his opinion, Yushchenko’s stand on the problem is “non-constructive.”

Yushchenko believes the Odessa Port Factory should be privatized, but without the pipeline and the transshipment capacities of the Pivdenny Port. “The transport facilities should remain under the monopoly control of the state,” Yushchenko said during his visit to Odessa.

Yushchenko issued a decree on April 15, which suspended the resolution of the Tymoshenko government, dated February 11, on the terms of the auction for the sale of the 99.52-per-cent package of shares of the Odessa Port Factory. The starting price of the package, to be put up for sale at the auction, is three billion hryvnias (some 600 million dollars). The auction was to be held 75 days after the publication of the announcement.

The Odessa Port Factory is the second biggest producer of ammonia and carbamide, and the third biggest producer of nitrogen fertilizers in Ukraine. It specializes on the transshipment of chemicals coming from the CIS member countries for export. The Odessa Port Factory holds the monopoly on the interstate market of specialized services for the reception, cooling and transshipment of ammonia. During the past three years some 88 per cent of the Factory’s produce has been going for export. Ammonia has been exported to Belgium, the United States and France, and carbamide – to Switzerland, Belgium, the United States and Germany. The charter capital of the Factory is 798,544,000 hryvnias.