Report: Croatia, US officials to talk INA, MOL

Deals

High-level government officials from Croatia and the United States will meet to discuss oil and gas company INA and offshore drilling in the Adriatic within two weeks, Croatian news outlet Vecernji list reported yesterday. 

The possible sale of INA to a US company will be one of the topics at the talks, the paper said, citing “reliable sources”. ExxonMobil’s declared interest in drilling in the Adriatic has piqued the interest of other oil companies and, according to the Vecernji List source, the Americans will attempt to convince Croatian officials not to sell its stake in INA to a Russia-based company. Unfortunately for US interests, it appears unlikely that a US-based company will be stepping forth to acquire the share.

The government could also ask the Americans to help seek a solution to problems involving Hungary-based oil-and-gas company MOL, sources said.

MOL holds a little less than 50% of INA’s shares. The state of Croatia owns about 45%. A perceived lack of investment in the company by MOL and the state’s failure to take over INA’s loss-making gas business, as stipulated in a shareholders agreement, have been sources of tension between the two stakeholders.

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