Morteza Rahimian told Shana that the latest situation of the Persian Gulf Holding had been examined in stock exchange and it is predicted the final steps would be taken for transferring the shares of its 15 subsidiaries in the first half of the current Iranian year, that began on March 20, 2012.
He added that 41 percent of the shares of the holding will be transferred to the private sector based on a government's legislation last year in order to pay back debts to six banks.
Rahimian further said there was the possibility that another part of the holding's shares would be transferred to the Oil Industry Pension Fund, while another 40 percent of the shares has already been transferred to non-governmental entities.
Referring to the privatization of a great number of petrochemical units in recent years, Rahimian noted that by transferring Persian Gulf Holding, Tabriz Petrochemical Company, Mahshahr Special Economic Zone and Petrochemical Kala Company will be the only subsidiaries remaining under the aegis of the government even "though these companies will also be ceded to the private sector in next rounds".
Earlier Director for Planning and Development at the Iranian National Petrochemical Company (NPC) Ramezan Owladi had said shares of the Persian Gulf Holding, comprising 15 petrochemical companies, worth 25,000 billion rials (approximately $2 billion) will be ceded to the private sector this year.
Owladi said that implementation of article 44 of the Constitution (which necessitates privatization of many state companies) in the last few years led to rising productivity in the petrochemical sector.
Owladi said that privatization and creating a better environment for doing business in the petrochemical industry would lead to economic growth and rising employment during the year which has been named 'National Production, Supporting Iranian Labor and Capital'.
The National Petrochemical Company as the leading company in privatization succeeded in privatizing 21.977 million shares of petrochemical companies, worth 90.490 billion rials, through cooperation with Privatization Organization and Bourse in a three year period leading to 2010.
He further said that during the first ten months of the last Iranian calendar year, ended in 19th March 2012, more than 555 million shares of the petrochemical companies including Commercial Petrochemical Company, Kavian, Brojen and Mamsani Petrochemical Companies, worth 95 thousand billion rials, were transferred to private sector.
According to the official, the NPC will take more steps in privatization process this year through ceding shares of other state owned petrochemical companies to the private sector.
He concluded that privatization had created many opportunities for balanced development and growth in the petrochemical sector.