7. State-Owned Enterprises
Private enterprises are allowed to compete with State-Owned Enterprises (SOEs) on the same terms and conditions. The bidding process is considered to be open and fair. In practice, SOEs enjoy monopoly control of the segments in which they are active.
SOEs or “strategic companies” are present in several sectors such as public services (health, telecom), energy (hydrocarbon, electricity, water), media (television and press), and social security.
The primary SOEs are in the areas of: oil imports and distribution (SONABHY), water and sanitation (ONEA), lottery (LONAB), mailing services (SONAPOST), rail equipment (SOPAFER-B), electricity (SONABEL), and social security benefits (CNSS and CARFO).
Every year, all of the SOEs meet to report to the Prime Minister. While this meeting is covered in the press and top-line revenue and profit figures are announced, detailed SOE budgets are in most cases not publicly available. The government publishes the list of all SOEs with their basic financials.
GoBF announcements for privatization bids are widely distributed, targeting both local and foreign investors. Bids are published in local papers, international magazines, mailed to different diplomatic missions, e-mailed to interested foreign investors, and published on the Internet on sites such as .