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MOSCOW, June 15 (Reuters) - The stock market sale of a 25 percent stake in Russian state shipping company Sovcomflot, planned for this week, has been put on hold due to adverse market conditions, a source familiar with the situation told Reuters on Thursday.
The source did not say when the placement of the stake with investors, part of Russia’s privatisation programme, would now happen. Sovcomflot declined to comment.
“Privatisation should be approached very carefully,” Russian Economy Minister Maxim Oreshkin, whose ministry is overseeing the process, was quoted as saying in the ministry’s emailed response to a Reuters request for comment.
“We will announce specific deals as soon as they are ready.”
The Russian stock index on Thursday slipped below the psychologically important 1,000-point level for the first time since late November 2016 on concerns about potential new U.S. sanctions against Moscow.
Two financial market sources told Reuters late May the Sovcomflot deal was expected in early June. It was later postponed with no explanation.
Polyus, Russia’s top gold producer, decided to go ahead with its share offering on Thursday.
But another deal planned for the near future, by En+ Group, has been pushed back, two people familiar with the matter said.
En+ Group, which manages Russian tycoon Oleg Deripaska’s aluminium and hydro power assets, had planned to raise $2 billion from the sale of a 20-25 percent stake in London and Moscow as early as June, sources said in April.
En+ is now targeting September for the initial public offering (IPO), one of the people said. Another said the target date was now September-October. En+ declined to comment.
Deripaska told Rossiya 24 TV in early June the company wanted to raise $1.5 billion in an IPO and that a decision could be taken in the next 18 months subject to market conditions and as several other Russian firms are aiming for equity sales. (Reporting by Anastasia Lyrchikova, Oksana Kobzeva, Polina Devitt, Gleb Stolyarov, Polina Nikolskaya and Katya Golubkova; Editing by Christian Lowe and Mark Potter)