MOSCOW, June 26 (RIA Novosti) - Russian energy giant Gazprom is currently holding talks on listing on the Hong Kong stock exchange, the company’s Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Andrei Kruglov said Thursday.
“We are holding talks on getting a listing on the Hong Kong exchange. This is access to a large pool of investors from China and Hong Kong and we consider this a perspective in line with opening a trade corridor between the Hong Kong and Shanghai stock exchanges with a potential full conversion of the yuan, which everyone is expecting in the next year or two,” said Kruglov, who heads the company’s finance and economics department.
In mid-June, Gazprom, Russia’s top gas producer held a public offering on the Singapore stock exchange.
Gazprom's shares already trade in Moscow and its depositary receipts trade in London, Frankfurt and Berlin, as well as over-the-counter trading in the US.
“As for our next step, we are considering the possibility of increasing the level of this listing,” Kruglov said.
Currently, the shares of only one Russian company, Rusal, a leading global producer of aluminium, trade on the Hong Kong stock exchange. Rusal is registered on the British island of Jersey.
Russian companies cannot list on the Hong Kong stock exchange until Russia signs and ratifies a protocol to join the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO).
“There are certain issues, in particular, the signing by a Russian regulator of an IOSCO memorandum. We believe this may happen as soon as this autumn. We believe that after this we will have all the conditions for speedy entry and receiving a listing in Hong Kong,” Kruglov said.
Gazprom is also seeking opportunities to enter Asia’s fixed income market. “We are considering the possibility of raising debt capital on Asian markets through issuing a debut tranche of bonds in offshore yuan or maybe in Singapore dollars ,” the CFO said.
Gazprom also believes the market for loans and syndicated loans will be interesting for the company after Russia signs the relevant intergovernmental agreements on taxation, Kruglov said.
Gazprom and China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) signed a 30-year contract in late May for the sale of 38 billion cubic meters Russian gas to China per year. The deal is estimated to be worth $400 billion. Russia is planning to invest $55 billion and China around $22 billion in the gas deal.