Gazprom Unit Increases Hungarian Chemical Stake

Milford Holdings, a Dublin registered subsidiary of Russia's Gazprom, which is the world's biggest natural gas company, has acquired a quarter of Borsodchem, Hungary's second largest chemical maker, the move was made in order to expand further across Europe. Milford acquired 24.8 percent of Borsodchem after using special rights on shares held by Sibur, Gazprom's petrochemical unit, on April 29th, Borsodchem said in a statement published in the Budapest Stock Exchange's gazette. Milford announced the transaction in a separate statement. Gazprom, which first bought a Borsodchem stake through Milford in September 2000, has said that holdings in Hungarian chemicals companies are key to its plans to build a $1 billion a year pan European petrochemicals business. Before Sibur held the stake, Milford's attempt to acquire the shares in Borsodchem was resisted by the Hungarian company's management. Borsodchem sold a stake in TVK, Hungary's largest chemicals maker, against Gazprom's wishes.

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