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February 24, 2021
BUSINESS

Important companies keen to invest in CFR Marfa

According to the privatisation announcement posted Friday, the starting price in the tender will be RON 798.05M, minister of  Transport, Relu Fenechiu said.  The winner decided at mid-June. The railway company will take over debts to the state worth RON 606 M from CFR Infrastructura, by compensation.

Relu Fenechiu affirms that, so far, eight “important companies” expressed their interest in the privatisation of CFR Marfa, where the tender for the sale of the majority stake begins from RON 800 M (EUR 180 M). The privatisation of CFR Marfa is a solution for revitalising the company and the strategic investor that will purchase must capitalise and develop it, the minister of Public Finance, Daniel Chitoiu added yesterday.According to Fenechiu, the procedure of setting the price for 51 pc of CFR Marfa was complex and relied on the assets of the company, minus the present debts and those that will be accumulated until privatisation, as well as the potential of the Romanian railroad transport market. The Transport minister also mentioned that talks were held on establishing a smaller or bigger starting price in the auction, explaining that a too high price would have turned away some companies, while a too small price would have allowed the presence of firms too small for this purchase. He added that there are also social conditions, as the state is interested that the investor which will take over CFR Marfa will keep as many of the current employees as possible. “This privatisation and the evaluation of this company are made in the context in which we will transform into shares all the company’s debts towards the Romanian state, until the moment of privatisation,” Fenechiu explained.

The auction for 51 pc of CFR Marfa will start from RON 798.05 M and the winner will be decided at the middle of June, according to the privatisation announcement posted Friday by the Ministry of Transport. The procedure will have three phases: pre-qualification, negotiation based on preliminary and non-committing offers, and tender with offers in sealed envelopes. The ministry set for potential investors a series of pre-qualification criteria like “relevant experience in freight transport and operational capabilities” and “financial capabilities that demonstrate the possibility of taking over and developing the business.”The documents for the tender will be available at the HQ at the Ministry of Transport starting Tuesday, April 9, and those for pre-qualification can be submitted until April 22 and will be opened the next day. Until April 29, the documents will be analysed and a short list of pre-qualified bidders will be posted; starting May 9, negotiations will be held with each participant, individually. The privatisation commission will open the sealed envelopes on June 14 and will decide the winner.

CFR charges rail carriers for using the infrastructure

CFR SA notified all rail transport operators that they must pay until Tuesday, April 9, the debts accumulated as infrastructure usage tax, the company informs in a communique. The management team of CFR, which administers the rail infrastructure decided Thursday, April 4, to begin the procedures meant to recovering these debts, by enforcing all contract clauses.The measure is part of a plan aimed at increasing the company incomes. CFR SA does not specify the sums which it must receive as rail infrastructure usage fee. Government sources said that CFR Marfa will take over debts to the budget worth RON 606 M from CFR SA, by compensating part of the sums which the railroad freight operator has towards the infrastructure company, and the debts to the budget will be converted into shares, so privatisation incomes will go to the budget. “Through this operation, ANAF will cancel the debt of CFR Infrastructura and CFR Marfa will partially extinguish its debt towards CFR Infrastructura. In the second phase, the state will be allowed to transform the debts it took over, into shares, in view of privatisation. The procedure will also significantly diminish the arrears of state companies monitored by the IMF and will complete the incomes to the budget,” government sources explained. The operation was also discussed with the representative of the European Commission.Under the privatisation strategy of CFR Marfa, approved by the government in February, CFR Marfa had total debts of RON 1.8 bln, of which about RON 600 M to the budget and RON 600 M to CFR Infrastructura, the remainder being delay penalties and overdue sums towards private providers.

EC will finance the metro lines Parc Bazilescu-Straulesti and Drumul Taberei-Universitate

Relu Fenechiu says that he received the “verbal and safe” verbal agreement of the European Commission for financing the expansion of the metro line M4 (Parc Bazilescu – Straulesti) and the construction of main line M5 (Drumul Taberei-Universitate), through POS Transport 2007-2013. “The national public contribution for these two main lines will stand at 15 pc of the value of the projects, without VAT,” Fenechiu said in a press conference.

He added that, in the case of main line M4 (Parc Bazilescu – Straulesti) there were talks about financing via POS T the expansion by two km and a value of EUR 284 M. Referring to main line M5 (Drumul Taberei-Universitate), Fenechiu mentioned that the contractors already received RON 104 M and also avail of an additional RON 40 M.

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