Source Pravda.Ru

Yukos to go bankrupt, experts say

The possibility of Russia's oil major Yukos going bankrupt is becoming ever more real each day, believe experts polled by RIA Novosti on Wednesday.

"Yukos's financial position is very complicated. Even taking into account the high oil prices the company will be able to pay off all tax claims only if it is allowed to pay in installments," believes Alexander Razuvayev, leading analyst with Megatrastoil. "If any of the creditors brings a lawsuit, the bankruptcy will be real", he added.

According to Mr. Razuvayev, he would not share "the market's optimism about the recent article in the Financial Times", which wrote that ex Yukos chief Mikhail Khodorkovsky was ready to give up all his shares to save the company.

"The state never negotiates with those accused of grave offenses nor meets them halfway. The fate of the company's assets and capital is clear, new tax claims are to be made in the near future. Those buying Yukos's stock now will be falling hard later," Mr. Razuvayev said.

Maksim Shein, head of the analytical department at Brokerkreditservis, believes there is still hope that Yukos will escape bankruptcy, but it gets thinner every day. At the same time, if the action of court officials on asset sales coincides with the proposals of Yukos's management, a positive outcome is possible, he said.

"I think we can expect an announcement of Yukos's bankruptcy," believes Yevgeny Sotskov, experts with the Metropol financial company. According to him, Yukos will not be able to pay the bill if its lending banks demand immediate payments.

(Yukos's management has admitted that tax claims against the company amount to $8 billion, while its US shareholders have already brought a lawsuit against it due to the exposed law violation, tax evasion.)