LMT and Lattelecom privatisation faces further delay

12 Mar 2009

The Baltic Course is reporting that, if Prime Minster-designate Valdis Dombrovski’s new cabinet is confirmed by Saeima, the Latvian parliament, it plans to postpone the privatisation of Latvias Mobilais Telefons (LMT) and Lattelecom. The decision to push back the privatisation was set out in the declaration drawn up by the cabinet-elect, and is understood to have been motivated by the current global economic downturn. Additionally, it has also been reported that the declaration calls for the use of existing telecoms infrastructure to be used as a basis for developing new IT projects, in a bid to create resources that several state institutions could use. The implementation of the new coalition government is set to be decided at an emergency meeting of parliament on 12 March.

The privatisation of the two state-owned telcos was originally mooted back in early 2007, but hit delays even before the end of that year, with reports in November 2007 suggesting changes in government personnel were to blame.