ZAGREB, April 13, 2018 – The departure of Zoltan Aldott from the post of INA Management Board chair should not impact talks between the Croatian government and INA’s other owner, the Hungarian oil company MOL, on the possible purchase of MOL’s stake in INA by the government, Economy Minister Martina Dalić and Finance Minister Zdravko Marić said on Friday.
Asked what Aldott’s departure from INA would mean for the process of negotiations with MOL, Dalić said that MOL was the government’s interlocutor. “The government’s interlocutor in talks concerning the co-ownership of INA is MOL. I expect representatives of MOL, which is INA’s co-owner, to be our interlocutors in those talks, and what I expect of INA and its management, including the new management board chair, is for INA to develop as a vertically integrated oil company, which means that it should develop evenly all segments of its business,” Dalić said on the margins of a business conference in Zagreb.
Finance Minister Zdravko Marić, too, said that the change in INA’s management board would not change anything about Croatia’s plans with the company. “We have an advisor and a plan as to how to proceed in the weeks and months to come,” said Marić.
When asked if this was a change in MOL’s strategy, Marić said that it was too early for any conclusions. When asked if Aldott’s departure would slow down the process which the government planned to implement with regard to INA, Marić said that he did not think that this would happen. “We expect that process to happen anyway. It will not be simple… and will require a lot of effort and energy,” Marić said, noting that the government was ready for it.
MOL said on Thursday that it would propose Sandor Fasimon for the post of INA Management Board chair to replace Zoltan Aldott, who has been appointed a member of MOL Group’s Supervisory Board and has said that he will leave INA after a meeting of its shareholders’ assembly in June. Aldott was appointed INA Management Board chair in April 2010.
The Croatian government on Tuesday chose a consortium consisting of Morgan Stanley, Intesa Sanpaolo Group and Privredna Banka Zagreb to be its investment advisor on INA’s possible buyout and possible subsequent sale of the stake to be bought back from MOL to a new strategic partner in INA. The bid by the consortium amounts to eight million euro.