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    GAZPROM TO SET UP OIL COMPANY OF ITS OWN IN SUMMER

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    MOSCOW, April 5, 2004. (RIA Novosti) - Gazprom will set up an oil company of its own in summer already, deputy chairman of the board of the gas concern, Alexander Ryazanov said.

    "Gazpromneft Ltd. will be set up in summer already. At first it will belong to Gazprom. However, we can start selling its shares in 2-3 years," Mr. Ryazanov told the Vedomosti newspaper.

    According to him, some shares will be put on the stock market or offered to a strategic investor. Gazprom will hold 51 per cent of the shares," Alexander Ryazanov noted.

    "Otherwise, we would not be able to provide sufficient investments into oil business," he added.

    The new company will be involved in joint projects with Gazprom and oil companies, in particular, LUKOIL and Rosneft.

    "New gas fields we are to develop much differ from the old ones. These fields have great amounts of gas condensate. Its structure is close to oil structure, but the condensate is much more expensive," Mr. Ryazanov said.

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