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MOSCOW, April 25 Russia's state-controlled
hydroelectric power giant RusHydro may issue
additional shares to finance its investment programme, Energy
Minister Sergei Shmatko told journalists on Wednesday.
The company, which issued a Eurobond last year to raise more
than $500 million, has been struggling to generate enough profit
for its investment commitments in the face of lower than
expected electricity tariffs.
"There is one question: what are the sources of financing?
Either an increase in the loan portfolio or, we believe, there
is a reason for an additional issue," Shmatko said.
Shares in RusHydro were up 2 percent at 1006 GMT,
outperforming the wider market.
Industry experts believe some $500 million needs to be spent
on Russia's power infrastructure to prevent regular black-outs
and disasters such as the Sayano-Shushenskaya power station
explosion that killed 75 people in 2009.
RusHydro, Russia's biggest hydroelectric power producer, is
on the auction block, with the government hoping for a full sale
of its 58 percent stake by 2017.
It was part-privatised as part of the wider break-up of
Russia's power sector last decade. Grid firms FSK and
MRSK could also be sold down over the next five years.
(Reporting by Anastasia Lyrchikova; Writing by John Bowker and
Katya Golubkova; Editing by Elaine Hardcastle)