The Kosovo government has won an arbitration case in a US court regarding the failed privatisation of state-owned Kosovo Telecom – which offers services under the Vala brand – RTK reports. US-German consortium ACS Axos Capital had sought damages of EUR400 million (USD477 million) over the suspension of its bid to purchase the telco in 2013. President Hashim Thaci, who was Prime Minister at the time of the sale attempt, said in a statement: ‘Kosovo will always welcome foreign investments but will not allow it be misused as a state.’ As noted by TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, the government had accepted a bid of EUR277 million from Axos for a 75% stake in the telco in April 2013. Parliament refused to accept the deal, however, and after more than six months of delays the government cancelled the agreement. Axos pursued the case, and initiated legal proceedings in April 2015.
With the Axos case now resolved, Kosovo’s Minister of Economic Development Valdrin Lluka added that the government is in talks with telco’s board regarding potential restructuring measures as the company looks to tackle its mounting debt: the operator last month asked the state for an additional EUR60 million to pay creditors, or risk bankruptcy.