Sibneft Beats Crisis with $254m Foreign Debt Repayment
Moscow, Thursday, 17th September 1998: OAO Siberian Oil Company ("Sibneft") announced today, that it will meet in full its obligations to redeem the US $200 million six month zero coupon Promissory Note issued on its behalf by Salomon Brothers AG in March 1998, falling due on 18th September 1998. The Company also announced it has successfully re-financed on commercial terms a $54 million short term loan from RZB of Austria which fell due on 15th September.
EUGENE SHVIDLER, PRESIDENT of SIBNEFT, said, "Honouring all our debt commitments is an absolutepriority. Thanks to sound and prudent financial management this Company is strong enough to meet all its obligations in full despite the Russian Crisis. We have built up an excellent relationship with Western commercial banks dating back to 1995 and capital markets since Sibneft issued the first Russian corporate Eurobond in 1997. We will not let them down.
" The successful refinancing of part of this loan demonstrates that despite the crisis the door to international funding remains open to sound, well-managed Russian companies. Sibneft is leading the way out of the current economic turmoil."
Mr. SHVIDLER concluded, "Despite a very difficult economic environment Sibneft management is pressing ahead with cost cutting and efficiency programmes; we are constantly exploring new ways to build value. Our progress in driving through these initiatives will be detailed when we announce our US GAAP results for the first half of 1998 in October."