Slovakia’s national power utility, Slovenské Elektrárne (SE) said that its part privatisation should be completed during the first part of 2004, following the launch of a competitive bidding process for the purchase of 49% of the utility in August 2002.

SE said that preliminary bids are being evaluated. However, there are certain conditions that have been imposed by the Slovak government, including the resolution of issues relating to the country’s nuclear plants.

Issues that have to be addressed include the decommissioning of Bohunice A1, which continues to be funded by state money. Other issues are the closure of the two units at Bohunice V1, due to close in 2006 and 2008 respectively under the terms of the European Union accession agreement, and the suspension of construction of Mochovce 3 and 4, although SE said a feasibility study demonstrated the effectiveness of unit completion.