March 30, 2017 / 9:46 AM / 4 months ago

Serbia seeks investors to buy three indebted petrochemical plants

2 Min Read

BELGRADE, March 30 (Reuters) - Serbia invited investors on Thursday to propose terms to buy three heavily indebted, state-owned petrochemical plants, part of a plan to boost growth and cut the national debt.

Under the terms of a 1.2 billion euro loan-deal with the International Monetary Fund which expires next year, Serbia must sell big state-run firms, including the three petrochemical plants and the RTB Bor copper mine and smelter.

In three separate invitations, the Economy Ministry said it wanted offers for the HIP-Petrohemija which produces various plastic compounds, the fertilizers maker HIP-Azotara and the MSK Kikinda, a producer of methanol and acetic acid.

Prospective investors will have until May 3 to submit proposals that include a price, investment plan and details of the number of jobs they intend to keep in each of the plants.

The three companies owe hundreds of millions of euros in long-overdue payments for utilities and natural gas which they use in production and are heavily subsidised by the government.

Reporting by Aleksandar Vasovic; Editing by Edmund Blair

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