Slovakia has become the 100 percent shareholder of oil-pipeline operator Transpetrol, as an extraordinary general meeting on Friday, April 17, approved the transfer of a 49 percent stake that had been owned by Yukos International UK B.V. to the Slovak government, the TASR newswire wrote.
The stock transfer and the following confirmation of the action came after the Slovak Antitrust Office (PMÚ) and the Slovak National Property Fund (FNM) both approved it. Immediately after the transfer of shares was approved at the general meeting, Slovakia paid the agreed amount of $240 million (€183.80 million) to Dutch Yukos's account, which is under court supervision.
Transpetrol's general meeting on Friday also accepted the resignations of three members of the managing board who had represented Yukos: Štefan Czuczo, Ján Kridla and Imre Fazekas. At the same time, the assembly appointed a new member of the board who was nominated by the Slovak government.
“By concluding the transaction, the Slovak government has gained control over a restructured, effectively directed and profitable company,” said Yukos International director Bruce Misamore. The contract on the re-purchase of the 49 percent of Transpetrol shares from Yukos was signed by Economy Minister Ľubomír Jahnátek on March 26, following more than two years of negotiations. Misamore noted that the contract does not contain any provisions that would permit further manipulation of the shares.
Jahnátek himself has ruled out the possibility that the government would consider this, however. “We aren't interested in selling it (the ownership stake) further. In our opinion, Transpetrol should remain in state hands,” he said.
Slovakia sold the 49 percent Transpetrol stake to Yukos back in 2002 for $74 million (€56.67 million). The current government had been declaring its willingness to regain the shares since 2006, but intricate ownership relations prevented this until recently. 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.
20. Apr 2009 at 14:00