Can a state real estate company make more profit? The…

The Court of Auditors has been critical of the Federal Real Estate Agency – among others for the profitability of its subsidiary, ARE. However, a report available to the “press” shows that the real estate company is definitely allowed to make a profit.

Viennese real estate makes a lot of money for the government. Federal Real Estate Agency (BIG) ensures this. The company, 100 percent owned by Öbag, is one of Austria's most important property owners with 2,003 properties. BIG and its subsidiary Austrian Real Estate GmbH (ARE) recently posted record profits. A constantly growing dividend is distributed to the Republic.

But the Court of Auditors questions this. He targets ARE and criticizes BIG subsidiary's profit orientation. Prior to 2018, the finance ministry used BIG to “deliver assets to the central government in the most cost-effective manner possible”. According to the Court of Auditors, although the investigation period refers to the years from 2018 to 2021, the authority at the same time “sees a contradiction between the owner's strategic objectives for ARE – that is, development towards the market and a profit-oriented company. – and the goal of the government plan for 2020 – 2024 is to take into account subsidized housing. This is according to the Court of Auditors report released on Friday.

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