ECONOMY

Petroleum bid unsealed

The consortium comprising Latsis Group, owners of Greece’s third biggest refinery Petrola, and Russian oil giant Lukoil yesterday offered a price of 7.5 euros for each share of a 23.17-percent stake in state-controlled Hellenic Petroleum. The offer represents a 33-percent premium on the share’s closing price on April 5, the date of submission for the sole binding bid which was unsealed yesterday, and a 14-percent premium on yesterday’s closing price. The total value of the bid is 453,889,000 euros. «Following the evaluation of the financial offer, it was decided to declare the consortium Lukoil and Latsis Group the ‘preferred bidder’ and to start exclusive negotiations in accordance with the terms of the tender,» the Development Ministry said in a statement. The reference to the terms of the tender is interpreted as a clear indication that the government – which will hold an interest of around 37-percent in Hellenic Petroleum if the deal is successfully concluded – intends to retain the management. Hellenic Petroleum’s share price rose 7.5 percent to 6.58 euros in anticipation of the news. The company’s charter stipulates that the State’s share is a 35-percent minimum. In Greece alone, about 300,000 couples of reproductive age face fertility problems. However, several ethical problems have arisen around the various methods of assisted reproduction.