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Jurnalul.ro Vechiul site Old site English Version Gaz de France took Distrigaz Sud

Gaz de France took Distrigaz Sud

19 Oct 2004   •   00:00
Gaz de France took Distrigaz Sud

ECONOMICS - October 19th 2004

With 311 million euros, the French from Gaz de France will become the majority share holders. Following this transaction the jobs will remain the same and there won’t be any spectacular price increases.
by ADRIAN N. IONESCU

Yesterday, the Distrigaz Sud privatization contract has been signed, according to which the French group Gaz de France will pay 128 million euros for the acquisition of a share package having 30% of the Romanian company’s stocks. Some other 183 million euros will be paid for the capital increase, following which the package held will mean the majority (51%).

THE MONEY

With the 311 million euros, the transaction has (implicitly) evaluated Distrigaz Sud at 426 million euros, says a statement of the Ministry of Economy and Commerce (MEC), emphasizing that we are talking about "100% private capital, taking into account the flat debt" of the Romanian company. On the 30th of April 2004 this was summing up 95 million euros. In another way of speaking, through the transaction, "part of this debt is insured", say sources from MEC. The money are to be transferred into the accounts by the end of this year, but the representatives of the French firm will get involved in all the major strategic decision of the company from now on.

THE PERSPECTIVES

The privatization contract assumes the usage of the sums afferent to the investment capital increase for the development of the company’s activities, as well as for the modernizing work concerning the environment protection. According to Dan Ioan Popescu, Minister of Economy and Commerce, the privatization of Distrigaz Sud won’t automatically diversify the import options, process that will happen once the Nabucco project (the main gas pipe line that will connect the Caspic Sea and the Central Europe) is finalized and after that the gas pipe line Szeged - Arad will be finished.

JOBS AND PRICE LIST

"The jobs are maintaining and even stabilising through this major investment", stated Dan Ioan Popescu, adding that there won’t be any "powerful increases" of the natural gas distribution prices. The increases could come from the so called new technology "investment recovery instalment", which is set to 11.66% for the next three years. Previously, Dan Pantilie, president of the National Authority in this area, was estimating that the tariffs at the final consumer will increase with 2% each year, but without a direct connection to the privatization.

OWNER

Gaz de France is an energetic integrated company, having 15 million clients, from which 11 million in France, where they exploit 31,885 km of transport pipe lines and 169,244 km of distribution main pipe lines. It is the third operator in France and the second from the size point of view in Italy. In 2003 it cashed incomes of 16.7 billion euros and sold 60.2 billions of cubic meters of natural gas. Distrigaz Sud has 886,000 beneficiaries, to which it has supplied 5.6 billions of cubic meters of gas, in 2003, when it has registered sales of 462 million euros.

Translation : SORIN BALAN

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