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Nov 14, 2007 17:04 EEST
SARAJEVO (Bosnia and Herzegovina), November 14 (SeeNews) – Bosnia’s Muslim-Croat Federation government on Wednesday moved again to sell its 67% stake in troubled tobacco factory Fabrika Duhana Mostar (FDM) after a failed attempt in 2005.
“The Government of the Federation […] supporting a rapid privatisation of Fabrika Duhana Mostar, has ordered the Agency for Privatisation to take action to this end,” the cabinet said in a statement after a regular meeting.
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FDM has been operating at a loss in the last four years, its annual output falling from 769 tonnes of processed tobacco in 2000 to 177 tonnes last year, the cabinet said.
The Federation government tried to sell its stake in FDM in 2005 via direct talks with potential investors but failed to attract investor interest.
Last month Bosnian media reports said the country’s biggest cigarette factory, Fabrika Duhana Sarajevo (FDS) was in talks to take over FDM. The Federation government is the largest single shareholder in FDS with a 39.91% minority stake. The reports said the government had undertaken an initiative to revitalise FDM via a takeover by the well-performing FDS.
Fabrika Duhana Mostar (FDM) is based in the southern town of Mostar, on the territory of the Muslim-Croat Federation, which together with the Serb Republic forms war-divided Bosnia.
FDS is based in the capital Sarajevo.
Bosnia has a third cigarette factory, Fabrika Duvana Banja Luka, based in the Serb Republic. In September 2006, the Serb Republic government sold 55% of the factory to privately held domestic company Antonic Trejd.
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