Kemikovtzi Owes BGN1,600 Mln to Creditors, Court Has 14 Days to Decide on Insolvency

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Kemikovtzi Owes BGN1,600 Mln to Creditors, Court Has 14 Days to Decide on Insolvency

Sofia's Kremikovtzi steel mill owes 1,600 million leva to several creditors, not counting a bonded loan, lawyer Nikolai Stoynov said Tuesday.

Stoynov, who represents one of the Kremikovtzi creditors, RUA Investment Trading, was speaking after a hearing of Sofia City Court on an insolvency case against the troubled steel works, BTA reported.

RUA Investment Trading is among the plaintiffs in the case.

The said debt and the bonded loan add up to over 2,000 million leva (just over 1,000 million euro), Stoynov said.

Kremokovtzi submitted to the court an opinion saying that it is insolvent. This basically resolves the case, Stoynov commented.

Sofia City Court is expected to announce its decision within 14 days.

The Podkrepa trade union said at a news conference that sending Kremikovtzi in liquidation will cause what they called "a social explosion". They also warned against a possible adjournment of the insolvency case.

Podkrepa leader Konstantin Trenchev said that adjournment of the insolvency case would be the end of Kremikovtzi which expects to get in October an integrated permit or be closed down for failing to honor its commitments for investment in environmental improvements. He believes the best solution is to declare Kremikovtzi insolvent and start implementing a recovery prorgam.
Only the Ukrainian investor Kostiantyn Zhevaho has offered such a program, Trenchev added.

He recalled that the Kremikovtzi bond holders have won a case against the metal works in London and this automatically makes them first-rate creditors of the company. It would be only
logical for them to step in the insolvency case as an interested party, he added.

Economy and Energy Minister Peter Dimitrov, too, hopes to hear Kremikovtzi declared insolvent. Speaking to reporters a day before the hearing of Sofia City Court, he said that insolvency would hopefully result in termination of the old contracts and start of talks on the outstanding obligations.

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