26 Oct 2010 18:46

State may sell up to 15% of RZD in IPO after 2013 - Yakunin

MOSCOW. Oct 26 (Interfax) - The Russian government may sell up to 15% of Russian Railways (RZD) in an IPO after 2013, Vladimir Yakunin, the Russian rail monopoly's chief, told reporters.

"If you were to talk about the material side of the issue, then there's a possibility that 15% of RZD will be sold," Yakunin said, adding that the government was discussing the matter.

Asked how shares might be sold, Yakunin said in an IPO.

"I think we could approach this issue by 2013," he said.

Yakunin said the idea had long been doing the rounds in the "corridors of power" but that the sale of shares in RZD was out of the question until the sector had been reformed.

Yakunin said the results of those reforms should be clear in 2013, and another year would be needed for the RZD structures to receive their own balance sheets to enable the results of the restructuring to be assessed.

First Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov said last week that the sale of a government stake RZD was possible in the years to come. "We might put 25% minus one share in RZD on the market in 2013-2015," Shuvalov said.

By 2013, he said, the rail monopoly "will be able to fulfill its plan to sell core and non-core assets, and the freight companies [Freight One and Freight Two] will be working on the market," he said.

RZD is selling its assets transparently, and all final decisions are made by the government, he said.