9 Feb 2024 19:05

Nornickel currently prioritizing borrowing in yuan - CFO

MOSCOW. Feb 9 (Interfax) - Norilsk Nickel is prioritizing borrowing in Chinese yuan, the company's Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Sergey Malyshev was cited in a statement distributed by the company's press service.

This is due to the current nature of export sales, the tendency to reorient operations to the east, as well as "due to the low volatility of the USD-CNY currency pair and promising opportunities to hedge currency risk," he said.

Malyshev said that in 2024, Nornickel will have to repay Eurobonds, part of the syndicated loan and several bilateral loans. "At the same time, given the current realities, the average cost of servicing will grow. In 2024, our interest expenses will amount to about $1 billion," he said.

"For refinancing, we will use our own funds from operations, available credit limits in Russian banks, and potentially look at the public debt market. We consider both public instruments and bank lending as sources of new debt. The company seeks to balance the structure of its debt portfolio in terms of public and bank instruments; the priority in the selection process is the currency of the debt and its value. The company continuously monitors liquidity in the local financial market and actively explores opportunities to raise funding in foreign markets," the CFO said.

The company's net debt fell by 18% to $8.1 billion in 2023, with net debt/EBITDA ratio at 1.2x as of December 31.