Poland's treasury ministry has new privatisation proposal for Ciech

27 December 2012 16:45  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS)--Poland's treasury ministry is requesting that the government transfer its 38.7% stake in soda ash producer Ciech, as well as shareholdings in several other companies, to a state-owned bank that would then sell the stakes on the Warsaw Stock Exchange (WSE), a source at the ministry said on Thursday.

The move would effectively privatise Ciech as the treasury ministry is currently able to control the company through voting rights attached to its stake, he added.

Under the plan which is being discussed at Cabinet level, stakes in Ciech, energy company Polska Grupa Energetyczna and PKO Bank Polski would be transferred to Poland's only state-owned bank, Bank Gospodarstwa Krajowego (BGK), the source said.

Proceeds raised by BGK from selling the shares in the companies might be used to address slowing economic growth by helping to finance investment projects in energy and infrastructure, he added.

Ciech is currently implementing a new restructuring plan that includes the divestment of non-core business segments including its toluene di-isocyanate (TDI) unit.

A 2011 attempt at privatising the group, which is Europe's second largest soda ash producer behind Belgium-based Solvay, foundered after bidders signalled that they would only submit what ministers considered to be low bids.

By: Will Conroy
+44 20 8652 3214

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