YU entrusts central bank to decide on receiverships

BELGRADE, Jul 1, 2000 -- (Reuters) The Yugoslav parliament on Friday passed legal amendments giving power to the central bank to initiate receivership of insolvent companies and improve tax collection from companies.

"Concerning receivership procedures, our judgment was that the existing solution is inefficient because creditors do not have enough power to initiate the receivership procedure over a debtor company," Yugoslav Finance Minister Dragisa Pesic said.

"That is why we decided to give these authorities to the National Bank of Yugoslavia," Pesic told the parliament.

In future, the bank's Accounting and Payment Operations Office (ZOP) will be obliged to submit regular reports on daily changes in the movements on individual company accounts so that tax collection from companies is improved, he said.

Djordje Djukic, chairman of the parliament's monetary committee, told the deputies the government approach was wrong.

"If companies can open their bank accounts anywhere and the law allows them to have accounts in every single bank and if ZOP does not have exact figures on the status of all these accounts, the companies can continue to transfer their deposits and avoid paying taxes," he said.

Djukic said nowhere else in the world was the central bank or one of its affiliates in charge of deciding on receiverships.

"International practice does not know of such legal solutions. It's the job for the courts, not for the central bank," he told parliament.

A source close to the government said on Friday the law would be applied only selectively. Analysts said it created a tool for the government to put its own people in charge and a chance for sweeping privatizations.

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