Erbasu Group's Biggest Contracts Were With Bucharest Mayoralty

Ziarul BURSA #English Section / 28 iunie 2004

Erbasu Group has won some 30 public tenders worth 267 billion ROL over the past two years. Some 195 billion ROL worth of contracts came from The Bucharest City Hall.

Bucharest Mayor General Traian Basescu claims that The City had given Erbasu a 32 billion ROL downpayment for the contract regarding the installation of water meters in Bucharet. Basescu added: "Of this sum, the company had only accounted for 10 billion ROL. Considering that the money we gave him had been borrowed from EIB, we could not give him another downpayment as he had requested because he had not yet accounted for the 22 billion ROL difference. The only way Mihai Erbasu would have received another downpayment would have been a letter of guarantee that he might have obtained from a bank and shown it to The City Hall." However, Basescu believes Erbasu could not have obtained such letter because everything he owned was mortgaged or collateralized. Razvan Murgeanu, a Bucharest City Hall executive director in charge of public utilities, told "Bursa" that Erbasu had been a good friend of his and that, to the best of his knowledge, Erbasu was not in any serious financial difficulties. Murgeanu added that Erbasu had been a major sponsor of several divisions of The Dinamo Sports Club. Murgeanu told "Bursa:" "I don't know what's going to happen with them now. Mihai Erbasu came to me for help. He had three invoices worth almost five billion lei. We could not pay him right-away without a letter of guarantee from a bank. He said he could not obtain such letter immediately because he had just changed banks. He also mentioned that he had substantial receivables to collect from sectorial mayoralties. To the best of my knowledge he did not have more contracts with The Sector 2 Mayoralty than with the other mayoralties in Bucharest."

Businessman Cristian Tintareanu told "Bursa" that, although he had known Erbasu for 30 years, they were not too close. He explained: "Erbasu did not use to go to many parties. I was surprised to see him at Marian Iliescu's birthday party, held at my place. I know from Marian Iliescu that Erbasu had a very good time then." Tintareanu added that, as far as he could tell, Erbasu's companies were not in serious financial trouble. He explained: "A month ago, he bought a plot of land in Bucharest from Marian Iliescu for quite large price. He was planning to build an apartment building there. As far as I know, he gave Iliescu a post-dated check due in July. I don't think Erbasu was murdered."

Marian Iliescu confirmed that he had sold Mihai Erbasu a plot of land in Popa Nan Street. The two of them were planning to build two apartment buildings there, for which construction permits are pending. Iliescu told "Bursa:" "I have already received the money from Mr. Erbasu. I have said it before and I'm saying it again that Mihai Erbasu's companies were not in any serious financial difficulties. Like many other builders, he had receivables and he had debts, too. His assets are worth a great deal. I don't believe that he committed suicide... It was probably an accident."

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