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Russia has no plans to privatize oil sector - Kremlin responds to Kudrin

Russia has no plans to privatize oil sector - Kremlin responds to Kudrin
The Russian government has no plans to sell the state’s share in major oil companies like Rosneft, according to the President’s press secretary Dmitry Peskov.

The statement was issued in response to a proposal from former Russian Finance Minister Aleksey Kudrin during the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF).

During the Forum, Kudrin said the Russian government should privatize all state-owned oil firms by 2025.

"The oil sector should be fully privatized in the next 7-8 years, no state companies are needed now as state ownership brings more harm than benefit to those companies," he told the TASS news agency, adding that oil companies can deal with problems without government participation.

“It turns out that the private sector reacts more quickly to all these new changes. Reducing the public sector and increasing the private sector is within our power,” said Kudrin.

Russia's dependence on oil and gas exports resulted in a two-year recession, which finished at the end of 2016. Kudrin has repeatedly urged President Vladimir Putin to consider oil privatization to help revive economic growth.

“This is a well-known expert point of view of Aleksey Kudrin. His arguments are reasonable enough. There are also other points of view. As far as I know, the government has no such plans yet," Peskov said.

Kudrin is now working for the Kremlin in an unofficial capacity developing an economic plan for Russia in competition with other independent economists.