HDZ and MOST to Politically Appoint Management Teams in Public Companies?

Total Croatia News

The only problem is that public companies’ boards of directors are supposed to be appointed after an impartial public competition.

All HDZ county organizations have been instructed to submit to the party central office their proposals for state secretaries in ministries. According to sources, HDZ presidency should meet later today to discuss who should be state secretaries in HDZ’s ministries. In the new government, state secretaries have replaced former deputy ministers, reports Jutarnji List on October 25, 2016.

The plan is then for directors of departments in ministries to be selected in a similar manner. Directors will replace former assistant ministers as the third level in each individual ministry. The process should further continue with CEOs and members of boards of directors of publicly-owned companies as well.

The most interesting aspect of this is how will HDZ and MOST divide among themselves public companies, especially since in the last government there were a number of problems in that area. “The plan has not been agreed in detail, but it is likely that companies will be divided according to the 4-to-1 ratio”, said a source from HDZ. That would mean that HDZ would have its people in managements of four public companies for each company which goes to MOST. So far, it is not clear which public company would each party get.

There are over 50 large public companies which submit their reports to the government, and the most attractive are Croatian Electric Company (HEP), Adriatic Pipeline (JANAF), ACI (marinas), Croatia Airlines, Croatian Post, APIS (IT company), Croatian Lottery, Croatian Waters, Croatian Forests, Transmitters and Communications, Plinacro (gas company), etc. Roughly speaking, MOST should get about a dozen public companies, while the rest would go to HDZ.

However, such allocation of public companies is at the moment illegal due to government-approved regulation. The regulation was adopted in April of this year by the government led by then Prime Minister Tihomir Orešković and it stipulates that members of boards of directors should be selected through public competition process led by the State Office for State Property Management. The regulation details the requirements for candidates and provides for head hunting agencies to take part in the process. The government said at the time that it wanted to professionalise management teams and find the best people.

If Plenković’s government were to try to use a political agreement to allocate the companies and appoint its people as CEOs and members of boards of directors, it would have to either revoke the regulation or break it.


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