Rosneft to consolidate assets before IPO - economic ministry

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MOSCOW, February 16 (RIA Novosti) - A senior Russian economic ministry official said Thursday that Russian state-run oil company Rosneft should consolidate its assets before holding an initial public offering (IPO).

"Consolidation of [Rosneft's] assets would raise the company's cost, which is very important in relation to the upcoming IPO," Deputy Economic Development and Trade Minister Kirill Androsov said.

Androsov said a banking syndicate, charged with the preparation of the IPO, would draft a time frame to be reviewed by Rosneft's board.

Rosneft officials previously said the company intended to IPO its share package in the second half of 2006. According to Rosneft President Sergei Bogdanchikov, the IPO preparations would come in several stages, including the consolidation of Rosneft's subsidiary enterprises and the selection of businesses to be included in a consolidated pool.

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