Norilsk Nickel will stick with its policy of paying out 60% of core earnings in dividends for 2021 after one of its co-owners did not approve a lower payout, chief executive Vladimir Potanin told Interfax news agency.
The Russian government has been considering a higher tax on profits for companies that pay out more in dividends than they invest at home, though the idea has been put on hold until at least 2023, a business lobby group said last week.
“My assumption is that we have simply been given time to adapt our investment and dividend policies to this newly articulated demand for social justice,” Potanin was quoted as saying by Interfax.
Nornickel did not receive approval from stakeholder Rusal to cut dividend payments and will calculate its 2021 dividend according to its current policy, Potanin added.
Potanin’s Interros holding and Rusal, the world’s third-largest aluminum producer, own 34.6% and 25.5% in Nornickel, respectively. Both have a history of shareholder disputes over the size of the metal miner’s dividends and its investment in development.
Rusal did not immediately reply to a Reuters request for comment.
(By Polina Devitt and Anastasia Lyrchikova; Editing by Mark Potter)