Iran News ...


12/11/04

Iran remains non-committal over ThyssenKrupp's buyback plan

Berlin, Dec 11, IRNA -- Iran has pledged to fight it out against a decision by German steel group ThyssenKrupp to remove the country's representative from its supervisory board.

Press reports said Friday that the conglomerate had bowed to US pressure and removed a representative of the state-owned Iranian investment group IFIC from the board.

Speaking to IRNA here, IFIC head Ahmad Rahgozar stressed that Iran would not relinquish the seat, and would instead protest to the decision at the meeting of ThyssenKrupp's shareholders on January 21, 2005.

"Iran has not accepted the issue of terminating its membership at the supervisory board of the company," he said, adding "we have decided to raise up the issue at the upcoming meeting of the shareholders and insist on maintaining Iran's membership."

"However, we are not confident whether the demand will be accepted," Rahgozar added.

The official criticized the company for bowing to US pressure, including its decision to vacate the seat of Iranian representative at the company, Mohammad Navab-Motlaq.

"Having entered ThysssenKrupp some 30 years ago, we have remained in the company during its worst days, when it was making either no or little gains. But now that ThyssenKrupp is witnessing its best days, it wants us to relinquish our only seat at the supervisory board," he said.

Asked about Iran's possible sale of ThyssenKrupp shares, Rahgozar said, "This won't happen in the short-term. In fact we want to hold on to the shares because the price is rising and right now it is not a good time to sell the shares."

Iran's current 4.5 percent shares in ThyssenKrupp are estimated to be worth about 357 million euros, according to German press reports.

Rahgozar said the company's decision to bow to the American pressure, would send a 'wrong signal to German-Iranian economic ties'.

Washington forced already ThyssenKrupp last year to slash Iran's share in the company from 7.8 to 4.5 percent.

Iran acquired 25.01 percent of Krupp's share in 1976. That figure was lowered to 7.8 percent after Krupp and Thyssen merged in 1999.

... Payvand News - 12/11/04 ... --



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