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Sep 22, 2009 15:00 EEST
BUCHAREST (Romania), September 22 (SeeNews) – A Romanian Senate commission has proposed raising the ownership limit for a single shareholder in the country's five regional investment funds, the SIFs, to 5.0% from the current 1.0% instead of scrapping it, local media reported on Tuesday.
In June a group of 15 senators submitted a draft bill on the abolishment of the 1.0% ownership ceiling. In July the Senate’s legislative council approved the draft.
“The project [for abolishing the ownership cap] was at the Budget and Finance Commission and it asked for an amendment that would limit the ownership to 5.0%,” Ziarul Financiar business daily quoted senator Ovidiu Marian as saying.
“Both variants will be subject to voting. Probably the one with the amendment will pass,” Marian added.
This is just one of the many steps needed for the legislative proposal to be voted by the Parliament.
The share prices of the SIFs, listed on the Bucharest Stock Exchange, BVB, are very sensitive to any news related to the raising or scrapping of the shareholding cap designed to safeguard the funds from any single investor gaining control.
The BVB’s BET-FI index, which tracks the SIFs, was up 3.74% at 25,279.57 points by 1139 GMT on Tuesday.
The SIFs were set up in Romania along regional lines during the voucher privatisation programme in the 1990s as a vehicle in which local residents could invest their vouchers. The funds were initially endowed with 30% of all state-owned assets and they continue to hold significant stakes in a number of major companies across all sectors of the Romanian economy.
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