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ECONOMIC BRIEFS

Bank privatisation advisor chosen by December

Deputy Finance Minister Viliam Vaškovič said on September 14 that all contracts for an advisor on the sale of Slovak state banks should be ready by December this year.

The tender process for selecting an advisor, he said, began on August 30 under the guidance of the EU's PHARE programme. The process will also be supervised by corruption watchdog Transparency International Slovakia.

According to a Privatisation Ministry document from July, an international tender to manage a basic capital increase at state bank SLSP was to have taken place in August or September this year, with an investor or syndicate of investors to be selected by November and entry to occur in August 2000.

Similarly, state bank VÚB was to have been sold outright by December 2000, with a tender for an advisor on the sale to be called in September or October this year.

According to the document, an 11.7% share owned by the FNM state privatisation agency in state bank IRB (under caretaker administration since December 1997) was to be put up for sale, along with the FNM's 60.07% stake in Banka Slovakia.

IRB was to have been sold by October this year, and Banka Slovakia by the end of next year.

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