The new Slovak government yesterday made a formal offer to take control of Transpetrol SA, the country's oil pipeline operator, buying back a stake from OAO Yukos Oil Co., the Russian oil group declared insolvent last week. "I am very interested in getting the stake back," Lubomir Jahnatek, economy minister, told the FT in an interview. "If we get the stake back we would like to keep it in state hands." Slovakia is among the six bidders for Yukos's stake in Transpetrol as the government wants to increase its control over the company, the Slovak Economy Ministry said. Yukos is in liquidation and is selling its assets, including 49% of Transpetrol. OAO Gazprom, Russia's state-run natural-gas company, said July 27 it agreed to buy the stake for $105 million. Slovakia, which owns the remaining 51% of Transpetrol, must approve the sale and is negotiating with all the bidders. Slovak Economy Ministry spokesman Branislav Zvara said in a phone interview from Bratislava yesterday that the Slovak government placed its bid for the stake. Other bidders are Mol Rt.'s Slovak unit Slovnaft AS, Czech state-owned pipeline operator CEPS AS, Russia's eighth-biggest oil producer OAO Russneft and Poland's PERN Przyjazn SA, he said. Slovakia has concerns that the 49% stake in Transpetrol could fall into the hands of a Russian oil group. Zvara said the ministry imposed four conditions on the new owners, including the demand that the Slovak government must have management control of Transpetrol after the sale. (Bloomberg, FT.com)
Producing journalism that is worthy of the name is a costly business. For 27 years, the publishers, editors and reporters of the Budapest Business Journal have striven to bring you business news that works, information that you can trust, that is factual, accurate and presented without fear or favor.
Newspaper organizations across the globe have struggled to find a business model that allows them to continue to excel, without compromising their ability to perform. Most recently, some have experimented with the idea of involving their most important stakeholders, their readers.
We would like to offer that same opportunity to our readers. We would like to invite you to help us deliver the quality business journalism you require. Hit our Support the BBJ button and you can choose the how much and how often you send us your contributions.