The Kosovo Trust Agency (KTA), charged with the sale of hundreds of state-owned companies in the U.N.-run Serbian province, said on Thursday it picked provisional buyers for the firms, included in the fifth privatisation wave.
"KTA is now working to finalise all sale contracts," KTA said in a statement.
Under KTA's rules the names of the buyers can be disclosed only after a sale contract is signed. There is no timeframe to close the deals.
The fifth privatisation wave list included 28 companies. No bids were placed for three of them - Hydrotechnika, Parcella and Makermal, KTA ( www.kta-kosovo.org ) said.
The highest price offer, 3.25 million euro ($3.93 million), was placed for the Pristina-based drug distributor Farmed.
"The government and the KTA board is committed to the privatisation process. We would like to keep up the momentum that the process has taken now to complete our goal to finish it with success," Bujar Dugolli, Kosovo's Minister of Trade and Industry and deputy chairman of KTA board, told a news conference after the opening of the offers.
Kosovo, a Serbian province of two million people, is legally part of the loose union of Serbia and Montenegro, which succeeded rump Yugoslavia in 2003. The province was put under U.N. administration in 1999 after NATO bombed Serbia aimed to halt repression of the ethnic Albanian majority in Kosovo by Belgrade.
($ = 0.8269 euro)