28 Jul 2009 18:57

Russian Finance Ministry mulls entering foreign market in 2009

MOSCOW. July 28 (Interfax) - The Russian Finance Ministry could take the advice of Western and Russian investment bankers and issue up to $5 billion in Eurobonds in 2009, several sources told Interfax.

"Only meetings [with investors] were initially planned for this year, but it is fully possible that the placement will take place this year," a source close to the Finance Ministry told Interfax.

The source said it is still too early to say what amount of Eurobonds could be placed, but said the ministry could issue $2 billion-$5 billion in Eurobonds.

Many Western and Russian investment bankers have been saying the Finance Ministry needs to issue the bonds soon in several tranches and in various currencies. "But, for now, there haven't been any decisions or specific plans for 2009," the source said, adding that dates for a road show have not even been set for this year.

Deputy Finance Minister Dmitry Pankin told Interfax that the law on the 2009 federal budget does not envision the possibility of attracting foreign loans. "There aren't any foreign borrowings in draft legislation or regulations either," he said, declining further comment.