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Analysts expect high dividends on RAO UES shares

Due to considerable net profits of Russian energy grid RAO UES, dividends on its preferred shares will be high in 2002, analysts of the NIKoil Investment Group believe. Good financial results were due to a considerable increase in subscriber payments for electrical energy transferring and revenues from RAO UES's deal with Falcon.

2002 operational revenues of the energy holding gained 27 percent to $1.677bn. At the same time, net profits of the company went up 129 percent to $1.062bn as compared to $400m in 2001. Subscriber payments grew from $933m in 2001 to $1.287bn in 2002. Additionally, the deal with Falcon earned additional $510m for RAO UES.

At the same time, analysts point out that restructuring is still the major factor for RAO UES share prices. Due to the risks of restructuring NIKoil analysts recommend to hold these securities.

Its 2002 net profits and articles of association taken into account, NIKoil analysts believe that dividends on RAO preferred shares will be RUR0.29 (about $0.01) per share, which is 1.5 times more than in 2001. Previously representatives of the energy grid stated that in 2002, dividends on common shares would double against 2001 to about RUR0.5 (about $0.02) per share. RAO UES Board of Directors is going to discuss dividend policies and determine the 2002 dividends on April 25, 2003. The final decision will be made at the general annual shareholders' meeting on May 30, 2003.

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