The Chinese Three Gorges Corporation (TGC) won the public offering of 21.35 percent of Portuguese power utility EDP, state-holding company Parpública said in a statement sent to the Lisbon stock exchange regulator (CMVM).
Parpública said “the sale will be made for a consideration of €2.69 billion incorporating a premium of 53.6 percent over market prices as at 21 December, when the company’s shares closed at €2.245.
Other contenders included German group E.On and the Brazilian companies Eletrobras and Cemig.
Apart from the price, Parpública assessed the number of shares the bidders were willing to buy, the presentation of a strategic project, whether they would maintain the business identity and the bidders’ shareholder stability.
The Three Gorges proposal was the highest of the four.
The earnings for this sale cannot be used to reduce public deficit, according to Community rules, but can be used to cut public debt, which was over €171 billion in September according to a report sent to Brussels.
The CEO of TGC Cao Guangjing said after hearing the news that the decision was “very wise and fair”.
“I am very happy… the Portuguese government’s decision is good for the future of EDP and for better relations between our two countries”, he told Lusa in Beijing.
Meanwhile, the Portuguese chapter of Amnesty International (AI) has expressed concern over the possible negative human rights and environmental impacts of China Three Gorges (CTG) gaining a stake in the country’s main power utility EDP.
AI charged in a statement on Thursday that CGT’s record in China was characterised by a “lack of respect for human rights and for the environment”, especially in relation to its construction of the mammoth Three Gorges hydroelectric complex.
It said it feared that CTG could seek to implement similar polices through the Portuguese utility.