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Cablegate: Pm Zubkov Rumored to Be Next Gazprom Chair,

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E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: EPET ENRG ECON PREL RS
SUBJECT: PM ZUBKOV RUMORED TO BE NEXT GAZPROM CHAIR,
UNLIKELY TO BRING MAJOR CHANGE


--------------------------
GAZPROM LEADERSHIP SHUFFLE
--------------------------

1. (SBU) Gazprom is currently reshuffling its board of
directors as a result of chairman Dmitri Medvedev's
nomination as President Putin's successor. The company's
senior leadership was apparently sequestered January 30 in an
extended board meeting to review nominees. The current make
up of the board: five members from the government, four from
Gazprom, and two "independent" members, is not expected to
change. (N.B. Only one of the independent members, the
chairman of Germany's E.On, seems to truly represent an
entity outside the control of the GOR.)

2. (SBU) Medvedev's replacement as chairman has been the
focus of intense speculation in the press. Putin's economic
advisor Arkaday Dvorkovich told Bloomberg news January 30
that Prime Minister Viktor Zubkov had emerged as the choice
for chairman. This followed an article in the business daily
Kommersant that Putin would take over the chairmanship.
However, other press reports indicate Putin is not a
candidate and the speculation is now firmly centered on
Zubkov. Although the list of board nominees is tightly held,
nominees for the other government slots also reportedly
include Economy Minister Nabiullina replacing former Minister
German Gref, with most other members remaining the same.

-------
COMMENT
-------

3. (SBU) Regardless of who becomes chairman, we don't expect
any major changes in Gazprom's strategy or tactics.
Gazprom's chairman is not traditionally involved in the
day-to-day operations of the company. The chairman is
instead part of the country's senior political leadership and
the big decisions on strategy and major deals will continue
to be made by the Kremlin. End comment.
BURNS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
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