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Kremlin Fund to Only Take Small Stakes in Sales, Dmitriev Says

The Russian Direct Investment Fund will focus on attracting investors to the government’s $14 billion asset sales rather than taking large shareholdings itself, Chief Executive Officer Kirill Dmitriev said.

“If we’re very active that could mean that money just goes from one part of the government to another part of the government,” Dmitriev said today in an interview in Durban, South Africa. “So even if we participate, which is a very big ‘if,’ we’ll come for a very small percentage.”

The government plans share offerings for companies from VTB Group, Russia’s second-biggest lender, to OAO Sovcomflot, the largest shipper, and OAO Alrosa, the nation’s diamond monopoly. The sales should take place mainly on Russian exchanges, Putin said at his residence in Novo-Ogarevo, according to a transcript on the Kremlin website posted on Jan. 25.

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