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14 Nov 2014

Belarus plans to update privatization laws

MINSK, 14 November (BelTA) – Belarus is going to develop a new legislation on privatization, Belarus’ Economy Minister Nikolai Snopkov said as he spoke at the Belarus-UK investment forum in London on 14 November, BelTA has learned.

According to the minister, today and next one or two years (considering the recession of the main economies generating the global GDP) is not the best time for privatizing big state assets. Belarus, however, has been scrupulously preparing for the time when the situation gets better. “Under the World Bank technical project we have been testing the best world privatization practices at the National Investment and Privatization Agency. We are testing eight companies in order to develop new laws on privatization, which will be transparent and meet the best international standards,” Nikolai Snopkov said. “This way we are preparing for the time when investors’ appetite and the economic growth resume,” he added. Thus, Belarus will be ready to offer investors a clear efficient system for privatization of middle-sized and big companies, the minister noted.

Belarus is working on the privatization program for small enterprises as well. However, national investors still play the main role here.

Nikolai Snopkov believes that privatization and doing business environment should be comfortable both for the national and foreign investor.

When asked on whether Belarus is ready for listing its companies at the London Stock Exchange, the minister said: “We have already discussed the issue. A number of big companies are almost ready. Among those is a bank and several engineering companies.” Nikolai Snopkov believes, however, that listing at the stock exchange should not be the end in itself. It should be done when a company really needs additional financing for an investment project. “We are working in this direction. It is much likely that our companies will debut on the London Stock Exchange some time in the future,” the minister said.

 

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