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Blow to Costa Rica government plans

BBC News Online, Wednesday 19 April 2000, 02:21 GMT 03:21

A court in Costa Rica has thrown out controversial government proposals to partially privatise the country's telecommunications and electricity industry.

The plans led to the worst unrest in Costa Rica for decades.

In its ruling, the Constitutional Tribunal cited procedural errors made by congress last month when it approved legislation opening the Costa Rican Electricity Institute to outside competition.

The ruling cannot be appealed.

Correspondents say the decision is a blow to the government, which had argued the reforms were necessary to modernise the country.

Trade unions said the plans would lead to job losses and higher rates.