25 Jan 2002 – Belgium energy group Tractebel are the latest power group to reconfirm interest in bidding for Poland’s G8 group of electricity distribution companies in which the government is selling a 25 per cent stake.

Jean-Claude Dorsimont, vice president of Tractebel Electricity and Gas Europe told delegates at an energy conference in Warsaw, “We’ve extended the validity of our G8 bid until the end of June.”

Earlier this week, E.ON announced that its bid had been extended and an Iberdrola official was reported as saying that his company remained interested. The remaining G8 bidders are El-Dystrybucja, owned by investment group Kulczyk Holdings and Polish conglomerate Elektrim SA.

Since September, Poland’s Treasury Ministry has twice failed to close the tender. Resistance to a proposed employee benefits package from G8 trade unions prevented first Iberdrola and then Elektrim from signing preliminary sales agreements. The ministry then requested all tender participants to reconfirm and extend their bids by Jan. 14.

The eight distribution companies account for about 16 per cent of the Polish electricity market and are based in the northern cities of Gdansk, Torun, Slupsk, Plock, Elblag, Olsztyn, Kalisz and Koszalin.