Russian govt may sell entire Rosneft stake by 2017

The Russian government may sell its entire stake in the country’s largest oil company, Rosneft, by 2017, presidential economic aide Arkady Dvorkovich said on Wednesday.

The government wants to privatize 25 percent of Rosneft, in which it now owns over 75 percent, by 2011-2013 as part of its three-year $59 billion privatization program.

“The government has suggested a full withdrawal from Rosneft’s capital before 2017,” Dvorkovich told reporters, adding that concrete privatization terms would be set in the nearest future.

Last autumn the government approved the program, under which the state was to reduce its holding in companies to a controlling stake.

In June, President Dmitry Medvedev ordered the government to broaden the privatization program and cut state stakes in key companies to blocking, or even sell them entirely. Dvorkovich said that Medvedev approved the new plan which may be published on Wednesday.

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