Gazprom is set to hand the Russian Government a hefty £8.6bn pay-out after reporting record profits powered by soaring oil and gas prices.
The board of the Kremlin-backed gas giant has recommended offering £8.6bn in dividends the Russian government, which owns 49.3 per cent of the company’s shares.
It company reported a record net profit of 2.5tn roubles (£35.8bn) for the first six months of trading this year, with Russia retaliating to Western restrictions on energy supplies with counter-measures, exacerbating shortages on the continent.
The board has suggested delivering a pay-out of 51.03 roubles per ordinary share to investors, or a total pay-out of 1.21tn roubles, subject to shareholder approval.
This follows the energy giant skipping its annual pay-out earlier this summer for the first time since 1998, which saw its shares plunge nearly 30 per cent in just one day.
Famil Sadygov, Gazprom’s deputy chief executive, said: “Despite sanctions pressure and an unfavourable external environment, the Gazprom Group reported record IFRS revenues and net profit in the first half of 2022, while reducing net debt and leverage to a minimum,”
The board’s decision is subject for shareholders’ approval, with Gazprom’s extraordinary general meeting scheduled for September 30.
Sadygov also said Gazprom plans to stick to its dividend policy that envisages paying at least 50 per cent of adjusted net profit in dividends.
Looking ahead, rising petrol prices and higher oil export volumes could boost Russia’s takings from energy exports by 38 per cent to £289.6bn this year, according to documents seen by news agency Reuters.
Last week, the Office for National Statistics revealed the UK had imported no energy from Russia for the first time on record after a collapse in trade due to the invasion.
It said imports from Russia had fallen 97 per, standing at just £33m in June as sanctions took hold.
In the year coming up to the war, the country imported an average £499m of Russian fuel.
This has since been replaced by imports from Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, the Netherlands and Belgium.
Meawnhile, Gazprom has followed through on plans to close Nord Stream 1 for maintenance for three days, raising questions over the future of the pipeline and European energy supplies.