In Brief - 2003-03-06

  • 2003-03-06
Klaipeda handling more crude

Lithuania's Klaipedos Nafta (Klaipeda Oil), operator of the oil product terminal in the Baltic Sea port of Klaipeda, handled 637,500 tons of oil products in February, up by 25 percent compared with January and up by 5.5 percent year-on-year.

Over the first two months of the year oil product volumes rose by 8.7 percent year-on-year to 1.1 million tons, said Ramune Visockyte, a spokeswoman for Klaipedos Nafta, adding that the company expects to handle about 500,000 to 600,000 tons of oil products in March.

Annual 2003 oil product volumes are estimated at 7 million tons, compared with 6.7 million tons in 2002. According to unaudited data, Klaipedos Nafta posted a pretax profit of around 42 million litas (12.2 million euros) for the full year 2002. (Baltic News Service)

Dovod after Kaija for third time

Norway's Dovod Norge company this week filed an insolvency claim against Kaija, making its third try to institute the claim against Latvia's leading fish-processing company.

Riga Regional Court would not disclose the grounds for the claim, and Judge Valerijs Maksimovs, who will review the case, has not made any decision yet.

Late last year the court twice rejected Dovod Norge's claims against Kaija, whose Board Chairman Imants Kalnins said that recurrent insolvency claims were being filed at somebody's orders, and Dovod Norge representatives were doing it Soviet-style - going from judge to judge until one of them would finally open the case against Kaija. (BNS)

Merry-go-round for Tallinn

The owner of a world-famous amusement park in Copenhagen, Tivoli, is considering building a similar park in the Estonian capital through its subsidiary, Tivoli International.

Tallinn's competitors as potential sites for the park are the Latvian capital Riga and Warsaw, the daily Eesti Paevaleht reported. "We've studied the Estonian, Latvian and Polish markets and have to opt for one of them as the site of the park," Vice President of Tivoli International Mads Vaczy Kragh said. "The final decision depends on local authorities. The main thing is for the formalities not to take long."

Kragh visited the Tallinn city government at the start of the year to look for possibilities of building a Tivoli in Tallinn. "The city hasn't yet suggested a site, but it could be between the harbor and the Old Town, as Tivoli's business plan is counting also on Finnish tourists as visitors," said Anne Luik, Tivoli International's representative in Estonia. (BNS)

Yukos doesn't object to EBRD

Russia's second largest oil producer Yukos, majority owner and operator of Mazeikiu Nafta (Mazeikiai Oil), has said they do not object to the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development investing in the Lithuanian oil refinery.

Yukos owns 50.63 percent of Mazeikiu Nafta. The Lithuanian government has a 40.66 percent stake in the company, which is based in the northwestern Lithuanian town of Mazeikiai. Mikhail Brudno, vice president of Yukos RM, informed Prime Minister Algirdas Brazauskas about the Russians' position on this issue during their meeting in Vilnius on Feb. 27. Local media reported earlier that the EBRD could acquire 12 percent to 15 percent of shares in Mazeikiu Nafta. (BNS)

Lauma dressing neighbors

Lauma, Latvia's leading textiles and lingerie company based in the southwestern city of Liepaja, last year considerably increased its sales in neighboring Lithuania and Estonia, said sales director Valentina Doroscuka.

Estonian sales last year rose by 31 percent to 250,000 lats (397,500 euros), and in Lithuania Lauma's sales increased by 23.8 percent to 182,000 lats. This year Lauma expects further expansion on these markets - by 10 percent in Lithuania and 5 percent in Estonia.

Lithuanian sales account for 22 percent and Estonian sales for 28 percent of Lauma's total Baltic sales, which in 2002 was 19.3 million lats, up 1.5 percent year-on-year.

Doroscuka said fakes of Lauma's products have been discovered in both neighboring countries, and their low quality undermined the reputation of original items. (BNS)

Tele2 backs out of project

The management board of the Swedish telecommunication company Tele2 has decided to suspend investment in a project to launch fixed-line telephony services in Lithuania until it becomes clear whether the country's fixed-line market will be fully demonopolized.

Tele2, Lithuania's third-largest mobile telephone operator owned by Sweden's Tele2, issued a statement denying allegations by Lietuvos Telekomas (Lithuanian Telecom) that Tele2 was delaying the negotiating process by failing to solve certain technical issues. Tele2 argues that the issue of interconnection fees is the key issue in the negotiations with Lietuvos Telekomas.

Lietuvos Telekomas has made a preliminary offer regarding interconnection fees to its potential competitors. Lietuvos Telekomas, whose fixed-line monopoly ended on Jan. 1, 2003, wants to set a fee of 0.21 litas (0.06 euros) per minute during peak hours and a fee of 0.11 litas per minute in the off-peak period.

"Such interconnection charges would not allow for the launching local and intercity call services, which are key services for the Lithuanian population," said Pranas Kuisys, Tele2's commercial director. (BNS)