Sberbank Focused on Further Stabilisation of Agrokor

By 25 February 2019

ZAGREB, February 25, 2019 - Russian Ambassador to Croatia Anvar Azimov said on Monday the sale of Russian banks' stakes in Croatia's Agrokor was a corporate issue and that he was certain that in the period ahead Sberbank's main accent would be on further stabilising and improving the situation in the food and retail conglomerate.

Responding to questions from the press about the possible sale of Russian state banks' interest in Agrokor, Azimov underlined the positive role of Sberbank and VTB. After the implementation of a settlement for Agrokor, Sberbank will hold 39.2% and VTB 7.5%.

Azimov said their main goal had been to salvage Agrokor, stabilise and restructure it.

All those objectives have been met. The situation in the company is much better now, it's profitable, and Sberbank's job is to make the company even more profitable in the interest of Croatia and its stability, he added.

As for the possible sale of Agrokor shares, Azimov said it was a corporate issue between Sberbank and Agrokor. We in the embassy don't interfere in these things, but I'm absolutely sure that in the months ahead Sberbank's main accent will be on further stabilising and improving the situation in Agrokor, he added.

Asked if Croatia's future LNG terminal would affect its energy cooperation with Russia, Azimov said it would not as Croatia would always need Russian gas.

If Croatia is interested in building an LNG terminal, we can welcome that. Even if it builds the terminal, Croatia will always need Russian gas. Last year we exported more than 200 billion cubic metres of gas to European Union countries and the demand for gas is rising, while at the same time production in EU countries and Croatia is falling, Azimov said.

He said all they wanted was fair competition. I know that the LNG terminal can't compete with Russian gas, which is cheaper, more reliable and better, he added.

More news about Agrokor can be found in the Business section.