Putin’s VEB May Buy RusHydro Stake Earmarked for Privatization

VEB (VNECB), the Russian state development bank chaired by Vladimir Putin, said it may acquire a 10 percent share in OAO RusHydro (HYDR) to help fund capital spending at the power utility and curb price increases.

VEB may spend 64 billion rubles ($2.1 billion) to acquire treasury shares in the company, Chief Executive Officer Vladimir Dmitriev said in an interview in Davos, Switzerland.

The Russian state, the majority shareholder in Moscow-based RusHydro, has said it will sell some of its interests in energy companies as early as this year. Putin’s deputy, Vice Premier Igor Sechin, has proposed delaying some of the sales because of low market prices, Kommersant reported Jan. 14.

To contact the reporter on this story: Lyubov Pronina in Davos, Switzerland at lpronina@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: John Viljoen at jviljoen@bloomberg.net

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