The constitutional court on 21 July annulled five decrees that had established a framework for privatisation. It also voted to suspend all privatisation implementation apart from a measure providing compensation, job training and replacement for employees who might lose their jobs after privatisation.

The annulment is another setback to the government’s privatisation programme, from which it hopes to raise $2,300 million in 1994.

The action follows the recent invalidation of a May enabling act permitting the government three months to introduce privatisation decrees, including these five, in advance of legislation by parliament (MEED 22:7:94). The court has ruled the invalidation of the enabling act was retroactive, despite the government’s arguments. It invalidated the act on a case brought by cross-party resistance arguing that privatisation by decree was too hasty, and violated the country’s constitution.