EU requests a new privatization law – A road towards the sale of EPS, News
By the end of 2016, the Government of Serbia should prepare a new draft law on privatization, which should define the terms of sale of strategic resources, as Blic learns.
The new law should cover electrical industry, water resource management and telecommunications, which should be singled out in the process of privatization, that is, the status of their property, as well as state property, should be defined.
This has been requested by the EU, which believes that vague ownership relationships in public enterprises should be regulated by law, so that it would become clear what is being sold and at what price. As Brussels sees this vagueness as a potential source of corruption, the Government has modified the action plan in order to meet the prerequisites for the opening of chapter 23. The Law on Privatization, then, will have to be modified two years after it was passed.
The Blic source in the Government pointed out that this was, at the same time, an announcement that resources of strategic importance would be put up for sale.
– Brussels has ordered that the measure be taken and it should be enforced by the end of the year. The future law, then, must single out as specific segments of privatization the electrical industry, water resources management, telecommunications and other areas of public interest. This is an indirect announcement of the EU`s request to the state to sell EPS, but also sections of water management, while keeping everything clear regarding the ownership. In other world, the ownership structure in these public enterprises should be determined, regarding both the property and the land. This is a clear indication that the strategic resources will be privatized as well – the Blic interviewee said.
Experts claim that this shows that the state is not ready to protect the resources of public interest from Brussels.
– This is a road towards the situation in which we will be buying water from the future private owner of the water management. That may not be bad, but only if the state defines the conditions under which the private owner may sell the water. It`s good that the EU is asking us to regulate the legislature regarding public services, because the legislature as it is now is a fertile ground for corruption in potential privatizations – said Mahmut Busatlija, consultant for foreign investments.
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