Georgia may sell main pipelines
Georgia, Tbilisi, July 1 / corr Trend N.Kirtzkhalia /
Transiting main gas pipelines in a privatization list is provided in a bill on state property, which consolidates four laws on privatization matters, and which was initiated at the parliament by Pavle Kublashvili, chairman of parliamentary juridical committee and his deputy Lasha Tordiya.
"The principle is very simple - private sector manages any enterprise rather the government. This fact and this is axiom for people who support free economic relations. Given that, none of enterprises should be exclusion in term of privatization," Kublashvili stressed.
The parliamentary chairman avoided to comment whether the authorities plan to sell main gas pipeline, and whether there exists a concrete buyer. Kublashvili said it is planned to adopt the law in July and it will enact immediately after publication.
Georgia intended to sell gas pipeline to Russian gas giant Gasprom even in 2005. However, it caused negative reply in Washington and the United States directly counteracted this intention of Georgia. The matter was closed until Georgia and the U.S. signed an agreement under the Millennium Challenges Program. Along with other projects, which totally envisaged approving $295.3 million in aid, this agreement envisaged rehabilitating main gas pipeline on condition that Georgia would not sell this facility.
"The government should not transfer or issue the gas pipeline and/or a control package of shares of the Georgian International Gas Corporation (or its subsidiary), and must not issue a laying right for gas pipeline before expiration of this contract, except exclusive cases, if the Millennium Challenges Foundation provides its written consent," the contract said.
According to the Millennium Challenges-Georgia Foundation, project on rehabilitation of gas pipelines ended in February 2010. Roughly $35 million has been spent to rehabilitate 22 sections of 221km - pipeline.