Gazprom courts Norwegian Oil Fund

The gas giant wants the Norwegian government fund to raise its bets in Russia.

In what the company calls a “road show” in Scandinavia, Gazprom representatives last week met with key financial players in Norway, Sweden and Denmark.

“Gazprom is interested in raising the stakes of long-term investors in the company”, a press release reads. According to Gazprom, the Scandinavian investment funds have “a very high quality”, as well as “a comprehensive understanding of the specifics of Gazprom’s business”.

The Scandinavian tour, which was headed by Deputy Board Leader Andrei Kruglov, included visits to several financial groups in the three countries. However, it is believed that the Bank of Norway and its Government Pension Fund Global was a key target of the trip.

The fund, also called the Norwegian Oil Fund, is today the biggest pension fund in Europe and a key player in international stockmarkets. In Russia, the fund has values amounting to more than 25 billion NOK (€3.38 billion), of which about 6,2 billion NOK (€840 million) are placed in Gazprom (2011). With its stake, the fund controls 0,82 percent of the Russian company, the Fund’s Annual Report states.

Summing up the trip, company deputy Kruglov said it had been “extraordinary fruitful” and that the feedback from the investors was “extremely positive”.

“We plan to continue our dialogue with the Scandinavian investors on a work level”, Kruglov underlines.

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