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Albania cancels national grid operator's license

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January 21, 2013 10:39 AM EST | AP


TIRANA, Albania — Czech firm CEZ has lost its license to operate Albania's national grid following a dispute with the government that led to water supply cuts and daily rolling blackouts.

State regulator ERE announced Monday that electricity distribution would return to government control after the firm's subsidiary CEZ Shperndarje sh.a, which holds a 76-percent stake in the grid operator, saw its license revoked.

CEZ argued it was forced to introduce blackouts because of unpaid bills, while the government countered that the company had ignored its commitments for infrastructure investment.

The Czech company said it would seek compensation, arguing that the decision was in "in violation of the local legislation."