Gazprom dismisses Kaunas executive

  • 2006-08-23
  • From wire reports
VILNIUS - Russia's gas concern Gazprom has confirmed that it dismissed the previous CEO of Kaunas' heat-and-power plant, KTE.

In its letter to the Economy Ministry, the mayor of Kaunas and the council of Kaunas local authority, Gazprom, which controls the plant, stated that the decision was made in conjunction with Alexey Miller, Gazprom's chief executive.
Miller instructed representatives of Gazprom to vote for the dismissal of KTE CEO Algimantas Stasiukynas and his replacement with Antanas Pranculis, the technical director of KTE.

Stasiukynas has disputed the legal nature of the board meetings and claims that he is still CEO of the plant.
On Aug. 4, a Vilnius court appointed Rimandas Stonys, president of the gas imports company Dujotekana, a temporary administrator of KTE. Gazprom has confirmed its support for the appointment of Stonys, who is also a member of KTE's board, saying the move was "a temporary though necessary measure to secure continuous operations of a strategic Lithuanian company and protect the interests of company shareholders."

Gazprom, together with Dujotekana and U.S. Clement Power Venture, won a privatization tender for the power plant in 2003. Gazprom holds a 99.5 percent stake in KTE, while Dujotekana owns 0.5 percent.
The talks on behalf of the consortium were held, and the purchase contract was signed by representatives of Dujotekana.
KTE generates electricity that is acquired by Lietuvos Energija (Lithuanian Energy), the national power utility, and supplies heat to the city of Kaunas.

Meanwhile, Gazprom said it had no plans to raise its stake in Latvijas Gaze (Latvian Gas), though the company does not rule out such an option in the future.
Gazprom spokesman Sergei Kurpiyanov told Baltic journalists at a news conference that LG had formed a stable structure of share capital. "Generally, we are satisfied with the development of our cooperation with other shareholders in this project. Decisions are being made among colleagues, and, in my opinion, the business is not performing badly," he said.
"We have not received any proposals regarding buying LG shares," Kupriyanov added.