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UPDATE 1-Slovenian parliament dismisses defence minister over Telekom sale row

Thu 9th April, 2015 9:33pm
(Updates with details, analyst quote) 
    By Marja Novak 
    LJUBLJANA, April 9 (Reuters) - Slovenian Defence Minister 
Janko Veber was dismissed on Thursday by parliamentary vote for 
ordering the army secret service to analyse the security 
implications of the planned sale of state-owned telecoms 
operator Telekom Slovenia  TLSG.LJ . 
    Veber is a deputy president of the centre-left Social 
Democrats (SD) but the party is expected to remain in the 
government coalition. 
    Veber, who was voted out by 68 votes to 11, had maintained 
the sale of Telekom might affect national security, but most 
parties in parliament said he should not have used the secret 
service to analyse it.  ID:nL6N0WZ2BR  
    Dejan Zidan, head of the SD - which voted against Veber's 
dismissal - told reporters after the vote he would propose to 
the party's presidency that it remain in the government. 
    Even if the SD decided to leave, Prime Minister Miro Cerar's 
coalition would still hold a majority in parliament. 
    "There will be no political crisis over this dismissal as 
the SD is expected to remain in the government while 
privatisation will continue at a slow pace as it did so far," 
said Borut Hocevar, a political analyst at daily newspaper 
Finance. 
    Telekom, which is majority state-owned, is the largest 
company on the privatisation list with a market capitalisation 
of 867 million euros. 
    Several investment funds and Deutsche Telekom  DTEGn.DE  are 
expected to submit binding bids for it next week. 
    It is one of 15 firms earmarked for privatisation in 2013, a 
few months before Slovenia narrowly managed to avoid an 
international bailout for its banks. 
    So far three of those companies have been sold. 
     
 
 (Reporting By Marja Novak; editing by John Stonestreet) 
 ((Marja.Novak@thomsonreuters.com; +386-1-5058805; Reuters 
Messaging: marja.novak.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net)) 
 
Keywords: SLOVENIA MINISTER/
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