Competition, Ecology, Latvia, Legislation, Markets and Companies

International Internet Magazine. Baltic States news & analytics Sunday, 22.09.2019, 03:08

Competition Council bans Tiriga waste management company from signing agreements with Riga residents

BC, Riga, 09.09.2019.Print version
The Latvian Competition Council has banned Tiriga waste management company from signing agreements with the residents of Riga, LETA learned from the institution.

The Competition Council has not provided further comments on its decision, but will explain it in a press briefing on September 10.

Riga Mayor Olegs Burovs (Honor To Serve Riga) confirmed to LETA that the Competition Council has applied temporary regulations on the Riga City Council's cooperation with Tiriga.

"The Competition Council has ruled that the Riga City Council immediately, but not later than by September 12 annuls all waste management agreements signed between Tiriga and Riga residents. They propose that we should continue cooperation with the current four waste management operators, and theoretically it is a good proposal, but our lawyers say that it is not possible and in contradiction with normative acts," said Burovs.

Burovs today plans to meet with representatives of the respective institutions at the Riga City Council, and tomorrow will arrange a meeting with the waste management companies currently providing their services in Riga, trying to reach an agreement on extension of their services.

Asked whether the Riga City Council will appeal the Competition Council's decision, Burovs answered affirmatively, just said that first all technical issues have to be arranges in order to ensure uninterrupted provision of services.

The Competition Council already in April warned the Riga City Council about the risks to the competition and interests of the Riga residents if the local authority signs an agreement with the waste management operator for a term of 20 years.

"The current Riga public and private partnership scenario is the Sword of Damocles for development of the waste management market in Latvia. Without competition, services in the future will become more and more expensive," said Competition Council head Skaidrite Abrama.

There were two bidders, each of them formed up by two companies, in the tender for the public and private partnership. After the tender was completed, the Competition Council started assessing the newly set joint company as a merger or agreement on cooperation.

According to the Competition Council, a public and private partnership is welcome, but the Riga City Council is invited to make decisions on shorter cooperation terms, as well as divide Riga into several regions in order to ensure better competition.

Joint-stock company Tiriga's public partner is Getlini Eko that ensures supervision of the public and private partnership project. The private partner is CREB Riga that is formed up by two waste management companies - Clean R and Eco Baltia Vide.

As reported, Getlini Eko announced that CREB Riga is the winner of the tender worth EUR 686.3 mln on waste management services in the Latvian capital for the coming 20 years.

In early June, Getlini Eko and CREB Riga registered joint-stock company Rigas Vides Pakalpojumi that was later renamed to Tiriga.

The Competition Council announced earlier that Clean R and Eco Baltia Vide had to report on the merger in the new company CREB Riga.

Clean R last year generated EUR 33.375 mln in sales, and posted EUR 3.505 mln in profit. The company was registered in 2004, and has a share capital of EUR 1.2 mln. Its sole owner is TAK Investicijas and the true beneficiary is Guntars Kokorevics.

Getlini Eko is the operator of the largest landfill in the Baltic states, Getlini. The company was registered in 1997 and belongs to the Riga City Council (97.92%) and Stopini regional council (2.08%).

Eco Baltia Vide is a member of Eco Baltia group. Its largest shareholders are the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (30.51%), Otrais Eko Fonds (19.46%), and Viesturs Tamuzs, Maris Simanovics and Undine Bude (16.68% each).

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