bnn.lv Latviski   bnn-news.com English   bnn-news.ru По-русски
Monday 26.02.2018 | Name days: Mētra, Evelīna, Aurēlija
LatviaLatvia

Savickis believes oligarchs’ interests will be considered in Latvijas Gaze’s splitting

FaceBook
Twitter
Draugiem
print
(No Ratings Yet)

Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RULatvian government has accepted the long-awaited amendments to the Energy Law, which are intended to reduce reliance on Russia. Although Latvijas Gaze still opposes this, the general tone has become calmer.

One of the heads of LG, CEO of Itera Latvija Juris Savickis believes the government has approved the model most acceptable for Russian shareholders. In addition, the political power in charge of Economy Ministry may be interested in those amendments as well.

Latvia is one of the last countries in the European Union that has yet to begin realizing the European directive on the liberalization of the gas market, which was approved 12 years ago. This directive states that all member states are to provide entrepreneurs free access to their gas pipelines and give consumers the right to choose gas suppliers. Lithuania carried out the liberalization of its gas market three years ago. Estonia plans to do that in 2015. Amendments to Latvia’s Energy Law were put on the table of the government this week. The law will still require three readings in the Saeima before it is finally adopted. Once the law has been adopted, LG will require at least one year to split the company, as reported by Nekā personīga programme of TV3.

Because there is no time left, it is impossible for the state to realize its own resolution to split LG in 2016. Now the term is set for April 2017 and the offer to sell the company to someone unrelated to its original owners has been extended until 2018. An unprecedented exception has also surfaced – a financial institution that would serve as both the owner and the head in the gas company. This exception has been made open for one specific finance institution – Marguerite fund. This fund intends to buy shares owned by the German EON concern, as reported by the programme.

EON has been trying to sell its 48% shares in LG for a couple of years now. Germans have even offered the Latvian state to buy them but the amount the state offered to pay for those shares turned out unacceptable for Germans. Six months ago EON launched talks with Marguerite fund. Martins Tarlaps of Cobalt law firm represents the interests of the fund during meetings of the Economy Ministry in which sides express opinions regarding the gas market liberalization draft. Previously, Tarlaps provided consultations to Economy Ministry on behalf of a different law firm.

Economy Minister Dana Reizniece-Ozola explains both the fund and German EON requested the aforementioned exception in the law. The ministry decided to comply to make sure the funds does not lose interest in buying LG shares.

Savickis believes the ministry has compiled the gas market liberalization draft based on the interests of oligarchs. These may include economic groups associated with the Union of Greens and Farmers, which now controls Latvia’s Economy Ministry. Savickis doesn’t mention Aivars Lembergs, but he does not deny if the latter may be interested nonetheless. «One of the schemes is something like this: reduce LG’s price and then use administrative resources to buy the company to then sell it to one or the other private company or group of companies,» –said Savickis. When asked about those private businessmen, Savickis said: «Ask the Economy Ministry about that. […] I think the Economy Minister and those in charge of preparing documents can provide more information.»

The ministry’s prepared model for splitting Latvijas Gaze suggests dividing it into two companies. Savickis does not have any major complaints about it. It would have been crazier had the proposal to separate the splitting from gas trading remained. LG representative mentioned during the government meeting that Russian Gazprom would sue Latvia for breaching the shareholders agreement should the Saeima approve this law. Savickis, on the other hand, doubts things could go this far. This is because Gazprom has a very small agreement with Latvia in regard to the shareholder agreement.

Ref: 102.109.109.6782


Leave a reply

Week in Lithuania. Lithuania not affected by problems at Latvia's ABLV Bank

Financial problems faced by ABLV, one of Latvia's biggest commercial banks, will have no impact on the Lithuanian financial system, officials from the central Bank of Lithuania and the Lithuanian Banks' Association (LBA) said this week. According to Vytautas Valvonis, director of the central bank's Supervision Service, the Lithuanian financial system has become very independent in recent years.

BNN summary of the week: bank drama and complaints about government’s work

BNN offers a summary of this week’s topical news in a variety of categories: Announcement; Proposal; Threats; Concerns; Decline; Future.

Baltic States ask European Commission to maintain EU Cohesion Fund financially strong

Baltic finance minister ask the European Commission to keep the European Union’s Cohesion Policy financially strong and aim it towards results, BNN was told by Finance Ministry.

Police commence investigation on possible money laundering schemes at ABLV Bank

Latvia’s State Police has commenced an investigation about the possible money laundering operations at ABLV Bank, which were reported by Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) US Department of Treasury.

S&P Global affirms Latvia’s credit rating at «A-»

On Thursday, 22 February, S&P Global reaffirmed Latvia’s credit rating on the «A-» level, retaining a positive outlook for the future, as BNN was informed by the State Treasury.

Kristovskis: state officials should be equally strict to Lembergs and Rimšēvičs

«Lack of consistency – such a conclusion appears after looking at the behaviour of state officials in regards to their request for Ilmārs Rimšēvičs’ to step down as governor of the Bank of Latvia,» says Ventspils City Council member Ģirts Valdis Kristovskis.

LSRTC: Zaķusala TV Tower’s reconstruction will cost several dozen million euros

According to chairman of Latvia’s State Radio and Television Centre (LSRTC) Jānis Bokta, reconstruction of Zaķusala TV Tower will cost several dozen million euros.

Trade union worried teachers may not have time to prepare for new education content

Teachers may not have enough time to prepare to work with new education content, said manager of Latvian Education and Science Workers' Union Inga Vanaga in an interview to Rīta Panorāma programme of LTV.

Judins, Loskutovs, Čigāne and Dālderis to continue working in Unity’s faction

Saeima members Andrejs Judins, Aleksejs Loskutovs, Lolita Čigāne and Ints Dālderis will continue working in Unity’s faction and coalition.

Saeima supports member’s proposal to publish wages of Bank of Latvia employees

Latvia’s parliament has decided to support Ints Dālderis’ proposal to publish wages paid to employees of the Bank of Latvia, education institutions, as well as municipal capital associations.

More snow expected on weekends; air temperature to drop even more next week

On the night to Friday, 23 February, air temperature in most of Latvia declined to -21° C… -27° C. It was only warmer in Kurzeme and some parts of Vidzeme, as reported by Latvia’s State Environment, Geology and Meteorology Centre.

SEB Bank: more employment options will open up and workers will become more selective

«It is becoming easier to change jobs nowadays. The largest selection of employment options are found in regional centres and cities, especially Riga and Pieriga. We see fewer employment options in regions even though there is still considerable demand for workers there,» predicts SEB Bank’s macroeconomics expert Dainis Gašpuitis.

ABLV Bank’s manager claims the bank is ready for cancellation of payment restrictions

ABLV Bank is ready for cancellation of payment restrictions, said the bank’s chairman Ernests Bernis during a press-conference on Thursday, 22 February.

62.9% of Latvia’s population was employed in 2017

Compared to the year before, in 2017 employment rate grew by 1.3 percentage points and number of employed persons by 1.5 thousand. Employment rate among men grew faster than among women – by 1.6 percentage points and 1.0 percentage points, respectively. 894.8 thousand people or 62.9 % of Latvia population aged 15–74 were employed in 2017.

Lithuania and Latvia: the tale between two sisters marked with rivalry

Relations between Lithuania and Latvia, two tight-knit Baltic neighbours, may exemplify a sisterly relationship from the first sight, but just over the course of a single week, several pings rang, signalling that rivalry is, and has always been, a component of coexistence.

Lembergs unable to organize his private life because of intense court proceedings

Lembergs unable to organize his private life because of intense court proceedings

Unemployment level in Latvia decreased to 8.7% in 2017

85.4 thousand people aged 15–74 in Latvia were unemployed in 2017. Compared to 2016, the number of unemployed persons has dropped by 9.9 thousand or 10.4 %.

Council member: ECB is openly dissatisfied with restrictions imposed on Rimšēvičs

The European Central Bank (ECB) is openly dissatisfied with restrictions imposed on one of its council members – governor of the Bank of Latvia Ilmārs Rimšēvičs, said council member of the Bank of Latvia Edvards Kušners in an interview to 900 seconds programme of LNT.

Defence expenditures in Latvia planned at EUR 234 million in 2018

Latvian government plans to spend EUR 234 million on defence projects, including procurement of transports, ammunition, armaments and individual equipment, in 2018 as confirmed by Defence Ministry.

Ministry cancels mandatory procurement component permits for five CHP plants

Latvia’s Economy Ministry has made a decision to cancel the permit to sell electricity within mandatory procurement component for five other renewable energy co-generation plants plants: SIA Madonas Eko, SIA Eiro-Āzijas investment agency, SIA EVOKEM, SIA M Parks, and SIA Eco Latvis.

NSC proposes Maizītis for a second term as Chief of Constitution Protection Bureau

Members of Latvia’s National Security Council have decided to propose the current head of the Constitution Protection Bureau Jānis Maizītis for another term at the helm of this institution, as BNN was informed by the State President’s Chancellery.

Latvijas gāze’s subsidiary Gaso proposes reducing gas transmission price

Latvijas gāze’s subsidiary Gase has turned to Public Utilities Commission with a proposal for a new natural gas transmission system service’s tariff project, providing for a reducing gas transmission price by 18-46% for more than 95% gas consumers.

FCMC invites Bank of Latvia to provide ABLV Bank with yet another emergency loan

The Finance and Capital Market Commission (FCMC) has invited the Bank of Latvia to issue ABLV Bank another emergency loan.

Crime rate in 2017 was the lowest in Latvia’s history

Last year’s crime rate turned out the lowest in Latvia’s history, as reported by Prosecutor General Ēriks Kalnmeiers in his annual report.

LEC: government priorities should include searching for causes and solutions, not the guilty

Latvian Employers’ Confederation (LEC) is worried about ongoing events and their negative effect on the stability and future development of the country’s economy. LEC believes that stabilization of the financial situation requires careful coordination of actions between institutions and the government.