Serbia's Deputy PM Opposes Gazprom Pocketing Entire Profit of NIS
The authorities in Belgrade have opposed the practice of Russian Gazprom, owner of a 56% stake in Naftna Industrija Srbije (NIS), pocketing the entire profit of the company.
Aleksandar Vucic, First Deputy Prime Minister of Serbia, noted that the company had reached a profit of EUR 380 largely thanks to Serbian oil, not extraordinary managerial achievements.
Vucic, whose Serbian Progressive Party won last month's elections, underscored that the Serbian government controlled a 29% stake in the oil and gas company, an yet all the money went to the development of the business.
Vucic, as cited by RIA Novosti, claimed that it was necessary for Serbia to get a full share in the profit from its 29% stake in NIS and to use the money to settle the multi-million debt of the Serbian state-owned gas company Srbijagas to Gazprom.
In an interview for public broadcaster RTS, Vucic informed that talks on the matter were yet to start.
"We have good friendly relations with Russia, but it does not mean that we do not need to take care of our own money and citizens," he added.
NIS is one of the largest vertically integrated oil and gas companies in southeastern Europe. The main shareholders are Gazprom Neft (56.5%) and the Government of the Republic of Serbia (29,88%).