YUKOS, Sibneft halt merger; No reason given

The merger of YUKOS and Sibneft has been halted by action of the principal shareholders of the companies. This was announced jointly by the two firms. A correspondent for the Agency for Conflict Resolution was unable to get any comments on reasons for the move from the companies' press service. 'This was done by mutual agreement,' the statement from YUKOS and Sibneft said.

At the very same time, a joint meeting was underway in Moscow of stockholders in YukosSibneft, creation of which was officially announced in April by stockholders of the companies. Official announcement of completion of the merger was made in early October. Stockholders in Sibneft sold 20% of its stock for USD 3 billion and exchanged their remaining shares at an equivalency of 0.36125% of shares of the new company to 1% of shares of Sibneft. Thus, the present owners of YUKOS received a controlling interest in the new giant company, while the principal owner of Sibneft, Roman Abramovich, became the stockholder holding a blocking packet of shares.

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