Abandoning non-specialized assets is necessary for rating rise

Oil&Gas Materials 16 January 2012 19:45 (UTC +04:00)

Azerbaijan, Baku, Jan.16 / Trend E.Ismayilov /

Transfer of non-specialized assets of the State Oil Company of Azerbaijan Republic (SOCAR) is call of the times and one of the conditions of presenting SOCAR as international company, a source in SOCAR told Trend on Monday.

"SOCAR enters international market that's why presense of non-specialized structures on the balance is inappropriate," the source said.

The source said disposal from non-specialized assets among which social and medical facilities as well as facilities in energy and water supply spheres is necessary in terms of receiving and raising ratings of international agencies.

"This is also necessary in terms of Azerbaijan's participation in the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI)," the source said.

In regard to how disposal of non-specialized assets may be preparation for the process of SOCAR privatization, the source noted this question in not on agenda.

"This has nothing in common with privatization of SOCAR", he said.

He said issue of privatization of SOCAR and oil and gas facilities is not topical since it is oil and gas revenues that form most part of the state budget.

Earlier SOCAR chief Rovnag Abdullayev mentioned possibility of transferring SOCAR share in Ateshgah insurance company as one of non-specialized assets.Abdullayev explained SOCAR's abandonment of non-specialized assets because of "conflict of interests", and that SOCAR employees could easily be insured in insurance companies and served in the country's medical institutions.

The source said all joint ventures where SOCAR participates, concern extraction and production spheres and since insurance company is non-specialized asset issue of sell of SOCAR share in it may be considered.

"However at present the company doesn't carry out any work in this direction," the source said.

The source said in order to sell SOCAR share in Ateshgah Sigorta, there should be relevant decision of the State Committee on state property

Ateshgah company was established in Dec, 1996. It has five offices in Baku and six regional missions in Azerbaijan.

The company's shareholders are ISR Holding (63 percent), RANEXIM (27 percent) and SOCAR (10 percent).