Republic of Serbia gets USD around 3.5 million from the former SFRY New York residence sale

MFA RSOn 31 May 2018, the Successor States to the former Yugoslavia signed a contract of joint sale of former SFRY residential apartment at 730 Park Avenue, for a total of USD 12.1 million, the amount of the best bid.

Joint sale of the New York residential apartment is the first such case in the process of implementation of Annex B to the Agreement on Succession Issues, and a result of considerable engagement of all Successor States over the last two years and it therefore represents significant success for all parties concerned. The Republic of Serbia, as the state coordinating the sale of this property, played a very active role in the process.

The Republic of Serbia got 39.5% net proceeds, i.e. USD 3,487,939.21.

Maintenance costs for the premises incurred from 1 January 1992 until the day of the sale (in total, USD 3,269,774.16) have been deducted from the total purchase price (USD 12.1 million), in accordance with the agreement reached by the Successor States, and these expenses have also been disbursed among all Successor States, according to proportions by value set out in Article 3, Annex B to the Agreement on Succession Issues. Bearing in mind that all maintenance expenses during the above mentioned period were paid by the Republic of Serbia, the money will be refunded to the Republic of Serbia.

Payment of all the expenses was necessary in order to keep possession of the residential apartment owned by the former SFRY, therefore orderly payment of these expenses by the Republic of Serbia has made it possible for the Successor States to dispose of this property – which was also recognized by all Successor States.

The apartment was vacated in 1992, when the last Permanent Representative of SFRY to the UN left – which is why it was not in a good state. Its peculiarity lies in the fact that it is a so-called co-operative ownership, i.e. it is not a “classical” real estate ownership – but ownership which consists of 960 shares in “Park 71st Corporation”, which is how much was owned by the former SFRY.

Following the sale of this property, direct savings of USD 108,745.00 in the budget of the Republic of Serbia for 2018 will be realized – which is the amount for which the current expenses of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs will be reduced in respect of the above-mentioned maintenance.

Apart from the former SFRY residence in New York, the sale process for four other former SFRY properties is currently underway (Permanent Mission of former SFRY to the UN in New York, former SFRY Embassy in Bonn, former SFRY Embassy in Bern and former SFRY Embassy/residence in Tokyo).