Interest in domestic companies escalates with good reason

Investors interested in buying Belarusian enterprises

By Lilia Krapivina

At present, 35 open joint stock companies have been sold as a result of Belarus’ 2011 privatisation plan, with a total of 50 expected to be sold by the year’s end. “If this amount is sold, it’ll be great,” asserts Anna Kornievich, Chief of the Department for Accounting and Disposition of Shares of the State Property Fund at the State Property Committee of Belarus. She notes that the 2011 privatisation process shows great success — as only seven enterprises were sold from 2008 to 2010.

This year has seen rising interest from investors towards privatisation. “It’s vital that investors see how easy it is to buy in our country, with sales being totally transparent. Everything is thoroughly explained and detailed information is provided; enterprises are open to visits and there are no back-door games,” notes Ms. Kornievich. Next year, investors are expected to become more active and interest should grow further. “We expect that, next year, the Government will allow us to sell shares in enterprises not sold this year — so more companies will be offered for bidding,” she tells us.

In line with the privatisation plan, it was planned that 180 open joint stock companies would be sold in 2011. After some reorganisation, just 168 remained for sale — all offered for bidding. “We’ve currently offered everything available,” stresses the State Property Committee’s representatives.

By the end of this year, several more auctions and contests will have been organised, selling shares in enterprises registered on the 2011 privatisation plan. A large company — Promsvyaz JSC — is offered for bidding for the second time. Ms. Kornievich notes that the price hasn’t been reduced, as interest is evident. Often, potential investors run out of time to prepare their submissions but are ready to take part in repeat bidding.

Enterprises not yet registered on the 2011 privatisation plan are to be sold in line with the President’s instructions later this year, with Gomelcable JSC and Zapadelektrosetstroy JSC shares on offer.

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