Standard & Poor's Raises LUKoil's Credit Rating

The Standard & Poor's Rating Services company has raised the long-term corporate credit rating of the LUKoil oil company from B+ to BB-, outlook stable. This is according to the oil company's press service. The rating company substantiates this by referring to the completion of the programme of LUKoil's restructuring aimed at the higher efficiency of spending and borrowed capital, the growth of the company's profits and the increased liquidity of its securities as illustrated by the resent placing on the markets of USD 350 million worth of LUKoil's five-year convertible bonds to mature in 2007.

The LUKoil oil company was chartered in 1993. Its statutory capital amounts to USD 664,502 and is divided into 850,563,255 common shares. The company is predominantly engaged in prospecting for, extracting, refining, and selling petroleum and natural gas. According to GAAP USA, in 2001, LUKoil's clear profits amounted to USD 2.1 billion. As of December 31, 2001, the company's assets were worth USD 19.942 billion. Over the first 6 months of the year 2002, LUKoil stepped up the production of oil by 1.5% on the year to 39.4 million tonnes.

The Standard & Poor's international rating agency consists of two structural divisions, the Ratings Services and Information Services. Both are leaders providing independent services and analyses to the participants of world financial markets.

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