Spectator on facebook

Spectator on facebook

Fico: Choice of advisor in SPP's privatization illegal

Speaking at a news conference in Bratislava on January 9, Slovak PM Robert Fico said that the choice of privatization advisor eight years ago for Slovak gas utility SPP was in contradiction with the law. According to Fico, the current Government has discovered that unaccounted-for expenses amounting to more than Sk227 million (€6.7 million) were paid out.

Speaking at a news conference in Bratislava on January 9, Slovak PM Robert Fico said that the choice of privatization advisor eight years ago for Slovak gas utility SPP was in contradiction with the law. According to Fico, the current Government has discovered that unaccounted-for expenses amounting to more than Sk227 million (€6.7 million) were paid out.

"We also uncovered the illegal payment of Sk257 million to the privatization advisor. In total, the advisor let the Government pay it (PricewaterhouseCoopers) more than Sk1 billion for advising it to chose one out of one applications," emphasized Fico.

He also pointed out that if the then-government had picked the advisor that was registered as the second choice, the state would have saved money – as "the second advisor set the maximum amount of payment at $18 million (more than Sk700 million at that time)". Fico continued that there were no documents on competition conditions concerning the choice of strategic investor in the privatization process itself.

"There are no notary minutes from the opening of offers and the evaluation of the offer. They simply don't exist," said Fico, adding that this has been pointed out not only by the Government, but also by law enforcement authorities. "We have also found out that the government by its resolution in 2000 set the market value of SPP at $6-8 billion (Sk240-320 billion). In the end, SPP was sold for Sk130 billion, which was $2.7 billion," said Fico.

Prosecutor General Dobroslav Trnka, who was recommended by the Government on January 9 to verify the privatization, said that there was nothing new he learned in connection with the SPP sale from that day’s Cabinet session. TASR

Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports

The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.

Top stories

New legislation protects creditors from unfair mergers

Fraudulent mergers were a legal business model enabling unfair businesses to get rid of debts

Tightening conditions when merging companies will increase the red tape of lawful mergers and prolong this procedure.

Blog: How long until a robot takes your job?

Are robots really taking over? What are the benefits and what are the risks?

Illustrative stock photo

EMA will go to Amsterdam, not Bratislava

The Slovak capital finished fourth in first round of vote for the seat of the prestigious European Medicines Agency

EMA will move from London due to Brexit. It will go to Amsterdam.

They reported corruption at the Foreign Ministry. Now they receive an award

The tenth year of the White Crow award, celebrating young people and activists who break prejudices and go against the tide.

White Crow award laureates