Nomination of Viktor Gerashchenko, the former head of the Russian Central Bank and a State Duma deputy, to the position of Chairman of YUKOS Board of Directors is "a gesture of despair" by Group Menatep, which possesses 44.1 percent in YUKOS, a Zenit Bank analyst said commenting on corresponding information. "Gerashchenko is a well-known banker with an international reputation and his activity in this position will help YUKOS in its relations with international creditors", the analyst specified. Moreover, Gerashchenko, as a member of the Rodina (Motherland) faction in the lower house of Russian parliament, is integrated in political processes and has some lobbyism possibilities.
At the same time, the appointment of such a "compromising" person as Gerashchenko to the head of the YUKOS Board of Directors will not solve the company's problems. "State authorities are set to change the owner of the company and the ex-head of the Central Bank will not hinder this process," the expert stressed.
The press services of YUKOS and Group Menatep have not commented on information about Gerashchenko's possible appointment. At the same time a source in Group Menatep told RBC that Gerashchenko had been nominated to the YUKOS Board of Directors and was one of the candidates to the position of Chairman of the Board of Directors.
The Board of Directors of YUKOS is expected to meet on April 28, 2004. An annual shareholders' meeting is scheduled for June 24, 2004.