ECONOMY

In Brief

Hutchison, Global win Turk port bid for $1.3 bln ANKARA (Reuters) – A consortium including Hong Kong’s Hutchison and Turkey’s Global Investment Holding made the winning bid of $1.275 billion for the operating rights of Turkey’s Izmir port yesterday. Privatization Administration Vice President Hasan Koktas said in a live auction broadcast that the consortium, which also includes Turkish port operator EIB, beat three foreign and local bidders. Shares in Global Investment Holding rose 7.8 percent after the auction. The price is way above the $775 million paid for Turkey’s Mediterranean port of Mersin last year and is welcome foreign investment for Turkey, which needs foreign inflows to offset a large current account deficit. Several privatizations have been postponed or altered in an election year and this deal was delayed three times. The operating rights last 49 years. AIG fund to take control of Bulgarian telecom BTC SOFIA (Reuters) – Icelandic tycoon Bjorgulfur Thor Bjorgolfsson had agreed to sell his 65 percent option in Bulgaria’s dominant telecoms operator BTC to an investment arm of insurance giant AIG, BTC said yesterday. The deal is worth 1.08 billion euros ($1.47 billion). «Novartor and Viva Ventures have signed an agreement with AIG Global Investment Group for the acquisition of 65 percent in BTC,» BTC said in a filing to the Bulgarian Stock Exchange. The transfer of shares will take place on or after June 11. TEN Suezmax Tsakos Energy Navigation yesterday announced the delivery of the 162,400 dwt, 1A ice-class tanker Suezmax tanker Antarctic from Hyundai Heavy Industries and the 36,660 dwt 1A ice-class handysize product tanker Aegeas from Hyundai Mipo Dockyard, both in South Korea. TEN’s pro-forma fleet consists of 53 vessels of 5.6 million dwt. Today, TEN operates a fleet of 42 vessels, all double-hull. Additionally, its newbuilding program of 11 vessels includes seven Aframax crude carriers, two Panamax tankers and two Handysize product carriers representing 957,280 dwt. Romania Daewoo sale Romania has called for binding offers in the privatization of carmaker Daewoo Automobile Craiova by July 5. The AVAS privatization agency also said it would publish a further schedule of the privatization on July 6, including a deadline for improved offers. The new European Union member’s centrist government plans to sell about 95 percent of the carmaker, including a 72.4 percent stake it bought back from its bankrupt owner late in 2006. So far, General Motors Corp, Ford Motor Co and JC Russian Machines have submitted non-binding offers. Many auto parts makers have set up in Romania recently, lured by the rising output of Renault’s Dacia plant, cheap labor and favorable tax rates. (Reuters) Titan’s Q1 net profit up Greek cement producer Titan’s first-quarter net profits rose 18 percent, above market expectations, as steady demand at home and the Balkans offset weaker sales in the USA, the company said yesterday. Net profits rose to 51 million euros ($69.41 million). (Reuters)