Kosovo: no re-tendering of privatized enterprises

Prishtina, 27 March 2007 – Kosovo Trust Agency (KTA) officials stressed that only one enterprise, Llamkos, has not fulfilled the special spin-off conditions, whereas the re-tendering of Kosova Teks and Tobacco Industry in Gjilan/Gnjilane has been ruled out because they fulfilled the conditions.

Ekrem Tahiri, KTA spokesman said so far, there is no serious problem with the enterprises privatised through special spin-off, with the exception of one of them. He also said there had been misunderstandings at the KTA Board meeting. “Usually, obligations that are stipulated in the contract have to be fulfilled within a period of two years.” If the promised investment is not done at the end of the second year, the enterprise is penalised with 20% of the unfulfilled amount and an annual rate of 12%, until the promise is accomplished. Otherwise, the last step is the so-called return of KTA sold shares”, said Tahiri. “Kosova Tex and “IDGJ Tobacco” did not have to report on this period, because less then 6 months passed since the enterprise was privatised. This was the source of misunderstanding,” he said.

Bujar Dugolli, Minister of Trade and Industry and member of the KTA Board had said if the owners of the “Tobacco Industry” and “Kosova Teks” do not fulfil the promised investments, the enterprises will be re-tendered again for privatisation. He said that no cent had been invested in these enterprises and they were on the right way towards re-tendering.

But, based on KTA data, Llamkos only has not started yet with any investment at all. Its’ owners have a few months left, until June, when investment obligations defined in the contract at €15 million Euros must be met. Two years after privatisation, each enterprise privatised through special spin-off is audited to verify the amount of investments and the number of employees. If everything turns out to be correct, with the expiration of the deadline, the enterprise is released from KTA control. According to KTA officials, since the start of privatisation until the end of March, only the Perparimi Company from Skenderaj has passed the two years time period.