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Minister Signs Cimos Restructuring Agreement

Ljubljana, 14 May (STA) - Economy Minister Stanko Stepišnik signed on Tuesday an agreement on the restructuring of car parts maker Cimos, under which one of Slovenia's major exporters will receive state guarantees for EUR 35m in liquidity loans provided by banks for up to six months.

After the state aid is approved by the European Commission, the liquidity loans will be transformed into capital. A recapitalisation of about EUR 40m will then be agreed within the next few months, while the banks will also need to hammer out an agreement with Cimos on the reprogramming of loans and lowering of interest rates.

Stepišnik said he was not worried about the Commission approval, saying the only comment from Brussels was that the company could present unfair competition to companies in Spain, Portugal and Greece in case it expanded its activities.

"In our case things are not moving into this direction, we are actually trimming down the company's activities. It is also not in the interest of the state to become the owner of the company, it only wants to maintain the jobs and withdraw from all the companies," he explained.

The state plans to extend aid to several other companies, including foundry MLM, clothes maker Aha Mura and tool maker Unior Zreče, Stepišnik added.

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