Relations between the government and Hungarian MOL, which are co-owners of INA, are one of the major topics in Croatian politics and economy.
Prime Minister Andrej Plenković met on Tuesday with INA Chairman of the Board of Directors Zoltan Aldott. The meeting was also attended by Minister of Environmental Protection and Energy Slaven Dobrović, reports Večernji List on November 8, 2016.
“We will have a constructive meeting and talk about all aspects of the business” said Aldott ahead of the meeting, adding that one of the topics of discussion would be the INA refinery in Sisak, which he and MOL allegedly want to close down, while the government objects to any such plans.
Arriving at the meeting, Minister Slaven Dobrović said he expected they would discuss “all major issues, including the Sisak refinery”. Asked if the refinery would be closed, as he first announced and then denied two weeks ago, Dobrović said: “”It is not closing down; we are looking for a solution. We know what is important for Croatia, jobs and development, and that is possible to be found there.”
This is a working meeting which was announced in late October by Prime Minister Plenković, who commented at the time on speculations about the possibility of the closure of the Sisak refinery. Plenković then said that he had already discussed the matter with Aldott and expressed his concern about the status of workers in the Sisak refinery. Plenković said that they “had agreed to have an urgent meeting between the INA Board of Directors and relevant members of the government so that we can analyze the relationship and strategic interests of Croatia in our oil company”.
Plenković also spoke about the issue at the beginning of the first session of his cabinet, saying that they would not allow INA to become a subsidiary of MOL, since INA was the guarantor of the energy security of Croatia. He also said that the government’s goal would be to ensure conditions for further growth and development of INA and announced the development of a strategy that will show “what kind of INA we want”.
“Based on this strategy, we will approach the resolution of all outstanding issues between the two largest shareholders”, he said, adding that Croatia would continue with arbitration proceedings in Washington which are essential for resolving the conflict between Croatian state and MOL.
“We will insist that INA must invest in exploration, production and processing, and must retain all the characteristics of a modern, vertically integrated company. This means projects both in Croatia and abroad, just as is provided ba the shareholders’ agreement”, he said. He concluded by saying that MOL must act as a responsible strategic partner in INA and develop all parts of INA in accordance with signed contracts and good business practices.
The results of today’s meeting are not yet known.