September 4, 2017 / 12:28 PM / a year ago

Russia's government eyes higher Transneft dividend payout: RIA

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russia’s oil pipeline monopoly Transneft (TRNF_p.MM) has scope to increase its dividend payout ratio, Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich was quoted as saying by the RIA news agency on Monday.

“We are analyzing the situation, we could move forward, whether to 50 percent (of net profit) or not - this I can’t yet say,” Dvorkovich was quoted as saying.

The government has previously ordered a 50-percent threshold for state companies in order to help bridge its fiscal gap, but some firms have been granted exceptions.

At the end of 2016 Transneft pledged to return a quarter of its net profits to shareholders and later recommended paying 24 percent of earnings in first half 2017 dividends.

It had paid 13 percent of earnings in 2016 dividends, or a total of 30.6 billion rubles ($528.86 million), two times less that expected.

Reporting by Olesya Astakhova; Writing by Maria Kiselyova; Editing by Andrew Osborn

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