Vinalines buys backs 75% stake in central port

Monday, Jun 03, 2019 14:52

Container area in Quy Nhon Port. Vinalines has paid VND415 billion (US$17.8 million) to reacquire a 75 per cent stake in Quy Nhon Port JSC from Hop Thanh Investment & Mineral JSC. — Photo

State-owned Vietnam National Shipping Lines (Vinalines) has paid VND415 billion (US$17.8 million) to reacquire a 75 per cent stake in Quy Nhon Port JSC, which it had sold illegally to Hop Thanh Investment & Mineral JSC without the Government’s approval.

Vietnam Depository Centre has recorded the transfer of ownership to Vinalines. The shipping group will take over the port management from this month.

“Vinalines has paid VND415 billion, equal to the amount that Hop Thanh spent to buy a 75 per cent stake in Quy Nhon Port from Vinalines,” Tran Tuan Hai, head of Vinalines’ communication division, told Giao Thong (Transportation) newspaper.

Hai said the money Hop Thanh had invested in the port after the share purchase would be calculated through an independent asset valuation process.

Vinalines has also arranged personnel in Quy Nhon Port’s management board and would take over control of the port in its annual shareholders’ meeting at the end of this month, he added.

Quy Nhon Port, located in Binh Dinh Province, is a major port in the central coast with a storage network of nearly 21,000sq.m of warehouses and 48,000sq.m for containers. Last year, a record eight million tonnes of goods passed through the port.

In 2013, the port was transformed into a joint stock company with charter capital of more than VND404 billion, of which Vinalines owned more than 75 per cent stake.

Vinalines was reported to sell these stakes to private company Hop Thanh Investment & Mineral JSC which had no prior experience in operating a port for lower market price during 2013-15.

Last September, the Government Inspectorate concluded the deal violated the law as the Ministry of Transport authorised the sale without the approval of the Prime Minister. The inspectors requested Vinalines to recover the stakes sold to Hop Thanh.

Vinalines reported net revenue of VND2.9 trillion ($124 million) in the first quarter of this year, down 10 per cent year on year. — VNS

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