Court Rules on Bulgaria's Tobacco Monopoly Deal within Month

Business | November 29, 2002, Friday // 00:00| Views: | Comments: 0
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The five-member panel of the Supreme Administrative Court will rule on the lawsuit filed against the choice of buyer for an 80% stake in state-owned company Bulgartabac Holding within a month. During its November 29 session the panel heard some of the motives of the Privatisation Agency and the failed bidders for Bulgartabac deal - Tobacco Holding and Metatabak consortium, as well as the initial winner Tobacco Capital Partners. They are to present their defence in written form in seven days. Commenting the demand for sweetening of the bids the lawyers of Rosbulgatabak pointed out the good performance of Bulgartabac according to international standards. Tobacco Capital Partners contested the claim that the bid of Tobacco Holding is financially secured. In its October 29 ruling the Supreme Administrative Court stripped the preferred buyer for Bulgaria's tobacco monopoly, the consortium Tobacco Capital Partners and Clar Inns, of its status. The Court said in its motives that favourable changes in the tobacco holding's financial indicators called for a better offer and the Privatization Agency had violated the Ordinance on Competitions by failing to demand a higher price. In response, the Privatization Agency petitioned a five-member SAC panel against the decision of the three-member panel of the same court.
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