MINSK, 20 February (BelTA) – The draft presidential decree on establishing Belarus' first state corporation is nearly ready, BelTA learned from Chairman of the State Property Committee Andrei Gayev on 20 February.
The official said: “The draft decree now has to be reconciled with the State Control Committee. If the approval process goes fast, the document will be forwarded to the Council of Ministers. Later on the government will forward it to the Belarus President Administration for perusal.”
The state corporation will be run by professionals instead of being directly controlled by government agencies although a government agency will be involved in the operation of the corporation. “The process needs to be tested on several specific structures in order to see whether it can be done in our conditions, whether it is effective and whether we should upscale it further,” Andrei Gayev added. At present the State Property Committee manages two holding companies – Belavtodor and Belresursy. The committee has also taken the custody of the state-owned package of shares in Paritetbank. These entities can be used to set up the state corporation.
As for privatization processes, there were no major sales in 2019 except for the sale of the Baranovichi dairy plant to the dairy company Savushkin Product. A total of 11 packages of shares were sold.
Asked about companies on the privatization list, Andrei Gayev noted it now includes 13 joint-stock companies such as OAO Managing Company of the Holding Company Horizont, OAO Gomselmash, and OAO Kupalinka. The list is supposed to grow larger in March. However, the official explained it is not a list of companies to be privatized. “We practice no planned privatization. It is a list compiled upon preliminary proposals of central government agencies. It allows potential investors to see what ministries and government agencies that own the enterprises are ready to offer and on what terms, albeit preliminary ones,” he said. “We also encourage our business unions to submit proposals. They are invited to speak up when a commercial entity wants to buy state assets. Then the State Property Committee will contact the relevant owners,” Andrei Gayev added.