US firm BlackRock reduces stake in miner Polymetal International


MOSCOW (Reuters) -U.S. investment firm BlackRock has reduced its stake in precious metals producer Polymetal International to 7.45% from 9.91%, the gold and silver miner said on Friday.

Polymetal last month said it had agreed to sell its Russian assets to a Siberian gold miner for about $3.7 billion, a deal forced at a knock-down price by repercussions from the conflict in Ukraine.

BlackRock said the trade was executed on the Astana International Exchange (AIX) in Kazakhstan which is now the primary listing for Polymetal International.

Polymetal’s London-listed shares lost around 70% in a few days following Moscow’s launch of what it calls a “special military operation” in Ukraine.

Polymetal in March 2022 disclosed that the U.S. asset manager’s equity position had doubled between November 2019 and February 2022. On March 8, 2022, BlackRock’s stake dropped back below the 10% threshold.

Trading in London was suspended and Polymetal subsequently moved its domicile to Kazakhstan from Jersey, delisted from the London Stock Exchange and relisted in Astana.

Polymetal said in January that Russian investment company ICT Holding had sold its 23.9% stake in the company to a consortium led by the Omani government.

(Reporting by Anastasia Lyrchikova; Writing by Alexander Marrow; Editing by Jan Harvey and Franklin Paul)

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