ZAGREB, June 4 (Hina) – The government on Thursday adopted a conclusion expressing its readiness to get involved in creating conditions to restart shipbuilding in the northern coastal city of Pula through the Uljanik Brodogradnja 1856 company.
The conclusion is based on documents provided by the receiver for Uljanik d.d., Marija Ruzic, Economy Minister Darko Horvat said.
He recalled that at its session of March 26 this year the government had approved the transfer of the concession for the commercial use of the port of Pula for shipbuilding purposes from Uljanik d.d., which has filed for bankruptcy, to Uljanik Brodogradnja 1856.
He noted that Uljanik Brodogradnja 1856 is not a legal successor to the bankrupt companies Uljanik d.d. and Uljanik Brodogradiliste d.d., but a legal entity that has the option of putting the coastal land and shipbuilding equipment to use and hiring some of the former workers of the Uljanik Group.
The equipment of Uljanik Brodogradiliste d.d. is estimated at HRK 50.36 million, and the Ministry of Finance, as the largest separate creditor, has been tasked with taking charge of those assets and recapitalising Uljanik Brodogradnja 1856.
The other separate creditors which are majority state-owned have been recommended to consider increasing the equity of Uljanik Brodogradnja 1856 with assets to which they are entitled as part of the bankruptcy settlement process, in which way they would be able to acquire a stake in the company.
Bankruptcy proceedings for Uljanik d.d. and Uljanik Brodogradiliste opened in May 2019.
In the case of Uljanik d.d., 225 creditors lodged claims in the total amount of HRK 5.1 billion, and at an examination hearing claims were set at HRK 4.86 billion. The Ministry of Finance is the single largest creditor with claims of HRK 3.2 billion and is entitled to a separate settlement.
As for Uljanik Brodogradiliste d.d., 2,448 creditors lodged claims for a total of HRK 3.1 billion. The Ministry of Finance is the single largest creditor with claims set at HRK 1.2 billion.
The government also gave permission for the Rijeka-based 3. Maj shipyard to sub-concession part of the port land to the company MKM Yachts d.o.o. for ten years, saying that this would open a new market for luxury passenger vessels.
MKM Yachts is a newly-established company in Croatia indirectly owned by Glen Moroney, the founder and owner of the Scenic Group, a leading global travel company specialising in luxury and exotic trips. The company is interested in building a series of cruise ships at the 3. Maj shipyard. The deadline for the conclusion of the investment, worth slightly over €3 million, is the end of 2021, according to the government.
Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic said that with these two decisions the government had sent a strong message to the shipyards in Rijeka and Pula.