Skinest Baltija plans to take Lietuvos Geležinkeliai to court

Skinest Baltija, a company controlled by Estonia's railway services and investment group Skinest Rail, plans to take Lietuvos Geležinkeliai (Lithuanian Railways) to court as the Lithuanian state railway company refuses to sign a contract, worth over 3 million euros, on the purchase of railway sleepers.

Skinest Baltija may also seek compensation for the Lithuanian Transport Ministry's public statements about the company, which submitted the lowest price offer in the tender for sleepers.

"We will appeal the process to a court. The aim is to eliminate Skinest Baltija from the competition at any cost," Skinest Baltija CEO Valdas Rasimas said in a press release on Thursday.

"If it becomes common practice in Lithuania to remove competitors or halt deals under the guise of national security, this sends a very bad message to foreign investors," he added.

The Commission for Coordination of Protection of Objects of Importance to Ensuring National Security has stated that the contract with Skinest Baltija is not in line with national security interests.

Based on the commission's opinion, the government on Wednesday adopted a resolution that says that Skinest Rail's owner Oleg Ossinovski "maintains relations with institutions of foreign states or natural or legal persons from those states which increase the risk or pose a threat to national security".

Also, Ossinovski is a suspect in a corruption case in Latvia.

According to Rasimas, the arguments about alleged links of Skinest Baltija's indirect shareholders to foreign bodies or individuals can be applied to any international business.

Source: BNS
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