Montenegrin media reported that the Serbian electric power company (EPS) is interested in buying shares of the Montenegrin electric power company (EPCG) from the Italian A2A but the EPS is neither denying nor confirming the report. The media in Podgorica claim that the EPS intends to buy the 41.7% share of the EPCG owned by A2A.
A statement from the EPS PR service said that the purchase of shares in power companies such as the EPCG falls within the competencies of the competent ministries and added that “strategic decisions on expanding the EPS in the region are taken at the level of the Serbian government which is the founder of the EPS public company”.
Montenegrin daily Vijesti asked the Serbian Ministry of Mining and Energy for a comment on the possible purchase of shares in the EPCG and was told that this ministry was not the right address for that question.
The Italian A2A is reported to have engaged the Rotschild investment bank because it plans to sell its shares in the EPCG by the end of the year as confirmed by Montenegrin Prime Minister Duško Marković. He said late in May that the Italians are expected to take a decision on the issue before his government can decide whether to buy the shares or not.
A2A has the right to offer EPCG share to the government for EUR 250 million within three months of the expiration of the contract, that is by the end of September this year. The management of the Italian company said that a decision on the shares will be taken by then.
The EPS was interested in buying EPCG shares in 2009 when A2A bought shares. The EPS management board decided in March 2009 to allow the company management to bid in a tender for 18.3% of the shares of EPCG. The EPS even paid the EUR 50,000 fee for the tender documents but never made an offer.
According to the Montenegrin stock exchange, the government owns 57.0151% of the EPCG while A2A owns 41.7477% and the rest is in the hands of small shareholders.
The EPCG has power production capacities of an installed power of 868 MW, including 657 MW (76%) in the Perućica and Piva hydropower plants, and 210 MW (24%) in the Pljevlja thermal power plant.