Romanian rail freight sale in his way

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Romania put an attempt to privatize its rail freight business, CFR Marfa, back on track on Friday, in line with conditions laid down by the IMF and EU, saying that three disqualified candidates had re-qualified. The state intends to sell 51% of the company at a price set initially at €180 million ($233 million). The Ministry of Transport on Friday said that OmniTRAX, a private US company, the Romanian railway group GFR and a consortium comprises Romanian company TFG, and Austrian investment fund Donau-Finanz and CO KG Austria, had qualified for the next phase of the process. They have until June 5 to present their final bids. The financial daily Ziarul Financiar ran a headline on its website “Surprise turn of events” noting that the three bidders had failed to qualify when the first attempt at the tender was made a week earlier. Since then the government has relaxed terms and conditions. Now candidates may participate if their turnover in the last three years exceeded €20 million instead of €100 million required previously.

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