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MOL, Croatian gov't agree on moratorium on INA share sale

A two-year moratorium has been placed on the sale of shares of Croatian oil and gas company INA by Hungarian peer MOL without prior consent of the Croatian government under an agreement reached by MOL and the government and published on the government's web site.

The agreement, signed by Deputy Prime Minister and Economy Minister Damir Polancec, stipulates that MOL, which raised its stake in INA to 47.16% in a public purchase offer last autumn, and the state, which owns 44.85% of INA, will each delegate half of the seats on the six-member board of directors. MOL will delegate the chairman.

MOL will delegate five members to the nine-member supervisory board. The government will delegate three members and union representatives will delegate one. The government will nominate the chairman of the board and MOL will nominate the vice chairman.

Decisions on strategy - such as winding up a unit, taking out loans or selling assets - may be approved only by a unanimous vote of the supervisory board, under the agreement.

If MOL acquires more shares from the state-owned packet in INA, the state's pre-emption right will be extended a further three years past the two-year moratorium on the sale of the shares. The state will still enjoy a pre-emption right even after the five-year period passes if it enters a share-swap agreement with MOL.

The government said the share-swap still remains only a possibility. (MTI – Econews)