Borza: "I pity Victor Ponta for the pressures he is being subjected to"

ALINA TOMA VEREHA (Translated by Cosmin Ghidoveanu)
Ziarul BURSA #English Section / 17 septembrie 2013

Borza: "I pity Victor Ponta for the pressures he is being subjected to"

Remus Borza, the president of the Supervisory Board of Hidroelectrica, will leave the company, prime minister Victor Ponta said in Târgu Jiu. This statement was made yesterday, without any further clarifications, when a priest in Gorj asked Victor Ponta to help him become a an executive at Hidroserv. Mr. Borza had the following statement for "BURSA": "The members of the Supervisory Board of Hidroelectrica and those of the directorate of the company are appointed temporarily, until the professional managers are selected, based on Ordinance 109, concerning the implementation of corporate governance in state owned companies. Most likely, this is what prime minister Ponta was referring to when he said I would be leaving".

The president of the Supervisory Board of Hidroelectrica, who was also the receiver of the company, said that he pities Victor Ponta for the pressure that he is subjected to by politicians, local "barons" and the secret services: "I took over Hidroelectrica, in summer last year, with losses of 693 million lei. The company now has a profit of 800 million lei after the first eight months. What economic reason would there be for me to leave Hidroelectrica?"

"In my time as a receiver of the company, I have terminated and renegotiated over 500 contracts concluded by Hidroelectrica SA with the various < < clever boys > such as politicians, local < < barons > > and people from the intelligence services. My departure from Hidroelectrica is what those clever boys who had been left with nothing to leech had been dreaming of. Those contracts had been concluded at prices 3 to 18 times higher than the average prices in their respective areas. I have faithfully served the interests of the company, which is strategic for the national energy system".

Remus Borza also insisted that it was him that eliminated the "leeches" from Hidroelectrica, not the politicians: "If Hidroelectrica hadn't filed for insolvency in June 2012, it was at risk of going bankrupt. As you know, the company had debts of over 1 billion Euros, a negative cash flow of over 700 million lei, it had losses and was going through a terrible drought season. This year, Hidroelectrica will have historical financial results, following the restructuring and streamlining programs I have implemented, but especially after the termination of the preferential contracts with private suppliers and the renegotiation of the contracts".

The president of the Supervisory Board of Hidroelectrica recently told us in an interview, that he strongly supports the listing of the minority stakes in state owned companies in and rejects the idea of the sale of the controlling interests in those same companies. He told us that state owned companies can generate profits, stability and trust, provided they are managed by professionals, not by people whose only credentials are their belonging to a political party.

Mr. Borza considers that, because of that reason, the listing of the minority stakes is the best solution for the state owned companies, which will gain transparency, investment capital and most importantly, will see less interference from politicians in their strategy. The president of the Supervisory Board of Hidroelectrica considers that the flawed, politicized management of Hidroelectrica is the cause of all the problems of the management in state owned companies.

Remus Borza has summoned for today a joint meeting of the Supervisory Board of Hidroelectrica and of the Directorate of the Company, which will also be attended by the minister of Energy, Constantin Niţă. He said that the topics on the agenda will include the professional competences and the management capabilities of the current directorate, the listing of the company and the maximization of profits.

Prime minister Victor Ponta, who yesterday attended the opening of the school year at the "Tudor Vladimirescu" National Gymnasium of Târgu Jiu, was approached by a priest from the Runcu commune. The priest asked him to help him get a position as an executive at Hidroserv, claiming that he was going to retire, and that his current salary was too small.

According to Mediafax, Victor Ponta first thought that the priest had an issue with Remus Borza, the president of the Supervisory Board of Hidroelectrica, and told the priest: "Mr. Borza will leave".

The prime-minister did not make any other clarifications concerning Remus Borza and Hidroelectrica.

Electricity producer Hidroelectrica, which is controlled by the Romanian state through the ministry of the Economy, has a new directorate, which will still be helmed by Mihai Stănculescu, and the Supervisory Board has been reconfirmed and completed. Thus, Remus Borza has been reconfirmed as chairman of the Supervisory Board.

Borza owns Euro Insol, the receiver of Hidroelectrica for the duration of the insolvency (June 2012-Junie 2013).

Remus Borza is being indicted for conflict of interest, as he is being accused of having concluded legal aid contracts with his own law firm during the time his insolvency firm, Euro Insol, served as the receiver of Hidrolectrica.

Borza was saying that beginning the legal investigation against him was a grave legal mistake, because his activity of insolvency practitioner or lawyer can not be considered a public position.

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