Poland indefinitely delays privatisation of chem assets

12 December 2011 16:13  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS)--Poland has indefinitely postponed a decision on when to relaunch the privatisation of major chemical assets that remain in state hands, the Polish Treasury Ministry said on Monday.

“All [the assets] are to be privatised, but taking into account the unstable situation on the markets, decisions on reopening the privatisation processes have been suspended,” said ministry spokesman Maciej Wewior.

“In the assessment of the Treasury Ministry, initiating the privatisation processes in question, in the current situation, bears a risk of unsatisfactory terms for the ministry.”

The postponement affects the largest Polish chemical group by revenue: Zaklady Azoty Tarnow, a maker of nitrogen fertilizers, caprolactam (capro) and polyamide 6 (or nylon 6), its multicomponent fertilizer and titanium dioxide (TiO2) producer Zaklady Chemiczne Police (ZChP) and its nitrogen fertilizer and oxo-alcohols subsidiary, Zaklady Azotowe Kedzierzyn (ZAK); soda ash and toluene di-isocyanate (TDI) maker Ciech; and nitrogen fertilizer, capro and melamine producer Zaklady Azotowe Pulawy (ZAP).

The ministry holds controlling stakes in all these companies.

Despite the postponement, the Treasury Ministry said it was continuing with a process to select a privatisation advisor for the sale of its stake in Ciech.

“[The ministry did] not exclude, at this stage, any of the possible modes of selling  state-owned shares, such as invitation to negotiation or a response to a tender,” Wewior added.

In general, the aim remained to sell all blocks of shares owned by the state in the chemical sector, he said.

Since late 2006, Poland has abandoned two sets of chemical industry privatisations, after receiving what were deemed by officials to be unsatisfactory offers.

By: Will Conroy
+44 20 8652 3214

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