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CP operation to bid for Indonesian shrimp producer

THAILAND - The world's biggest shrimp producer, PT Central Proteinaprima (CP Prima), said last week that it plans to bid for Indonesian aquaculture firm, PT Dipasena Citra Darmaja, in a move that would further expand its shrimp-farming business.

CP Prima - a uni of Thai agribusiness firm Charoen Pokphand Group (CP) - will participate in the auction of the Dipasena, which will be held by the State Asset Management Company (PPA) on May 25.

"CP Prima has taken the initiative by availing of the [financial advisory] services of Barclays Capital and BNP Paribas to prove its seriousness in arranging the necessary resources to meet the requirements for the acquisition of Dipasena," operations director Erwin Sutanto said in a statement sent to The Jakarta Post.

The firm said the decision to acquire Dipasena was part of its plan to expand its network in the shrimp-farming sector and to strengthen its position as the leader in the aquaculture business.

Erwin said that the company had paid a deposit of 25 billion rupiah (Bt95.7 million) as a precondition set by the PPA for participating in the Dipasena sale.

Under the PPA's requirements, interested bidders must have experience of the aquaculture business and be able to invest a minimum of 1.7 trillion rupiah to develop Dipasena's shrimp farms, which are run in collaboration with local farmers.

"CP Prima is one of the biggest aquaculture producers in the world and has a strong business model," BNP Paribas said in the news release. During its heyday, Dipasena was one of the biggest shrimp producers in the world, with output amounting to some 19,854 tonnes in 1996.

The government took control of Dipasena from Gajah Tunggal Group tycoon Sjamsul Nursalim in part-settlement of his debt to the state following the country's financial crisis in early 1998.

the Fish Site Editor

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