More Work to Be Done on Uljanik Restructuring Plan

Total Croatia News

ZAGREB, September 8, 2018 – Prime Minister Andrej Plenković said on Saturday the government expected more work to be done on a restructuring plan for the Uljanik shipbuilding group and that it had the impression that some stakeholders were interested in Croatian shipyards.

Speaking to reporters while visiting Rugvica, he said it was too early to say who those stakeholders were, but that they were both domestic and foreign.

Plenković said the restructuring plan was not the government’s plan and that it was drawn up by the group’s management and the consultants and the strategic partner they had chosen. He said the government only gave its input so as to improve the document, and that it was sent to the European Commission, “which was still analysing it.”

He said it was clear from his meeting with European Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager yesterday that the Commission expected more work on the restructuring plan as under the current one the state’s stake was much bigger than what was acceptable at European level. The government too expects more work to be done on the plan, he added.

Plenković said the restructuring plan came on the agenda after the government gave 716 million kuna in collateral in January which enabled Uljanik to function in the first half of the year. He recalled that last week the government gave a guarantee to the Croatian Postal Bank so that Uljanik workers could get their wages for July and August.

Asked if the restructuring plan might be turned down and Uljanik file for bankruptcy, Plenković said it remained to be seen. “The Commission will deliver certain preliminary, informal comments very soon. They have been working intensively only since last Monday. The goal was to invite the commissioner, to point out the seriousness of the situation and the need to have comments on the document sent as soon as possible,” he said, adding that he would see next week in Pula which solution would make shipyards viable.

Plenković said one of the topics with Vestager was the Petrokemija artificial fertiliser manufacturer, for which there is a recapitalisation plan with the key partners. “The government has made the relevant decisions. We expect a sort of letter from the European Commission and the relevant decisions from the Croatian Competition Agency so the process can be completed by Petrokemija bodies and the real restructuring of the company begin with a new ownership structure.”

Plenković said he had no information that the oil refinery in Sisak might be closed. “Dialogue between the government and INA on this topic is important. We chose the consultants who will help us achieve the main goal, the buyout of MOL’s shares in INA or finding a new strategic partner.”


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