Bulgaria invites Germans to buy marine fleet

A German-led consortium will be invited to bid for a 70-percent stake in the state company that runs Bulgaria’s marine fleet, the government said Friday.

The consortium, led by Germany’s Martrade Shipping & Transport, will be the only bidder invited to file an initial offer by Nov. 8, said Todor Nikolov, executive director of the privatization agency.

The two other bidders, Essar Shipping & Logistics Ltd., based in Mumbai, India, and Greece’s Chartworld Shipping Corp., failed to meet the privatization requirements, he said.

“Although there is a sole bidder, we will not sell at any price,” Nikolov said, adding that it was better to sell fast rather than miss the current favorable global trend for maritime assets.

The Black Sea country’s state-owned Maritime Navigation shipping company has a fleet of 71 ships, most of which need to be upgraded.

The agency expects to reach a deal with the German-led consortium before February.

The remaining 30 percent of the company will be offered for sale to the buyer after a period of five to six years.

Source: AFP

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