13 November 2008 (07:06)

Moscow, 12 November 2008 – At its regular meeting yesterday, the Board of Directors of UC RUSAL, which owns a 25% plus two shares stake in Norilsk Nickel, discussed preparations for the Extraordinary General Meeting of Norilsk Nickel’s shareholders, which has been scheduled for 26 December 2008 to elect a new Board of Norilsk Nickel.

UC RUSAL’s shareholders raised several concerns about the situation at Norilsk Nickel, notably in relation to Interros withdrawing cash from the company which has resulted in a worsening of the company’s financial situation set against the background of the fall in metal prices, the increase of production costs and crisis in the company’s management. This could lead to serious negative consequences for the company, as well as for the Krasnoyarsk Region where Norilsk Nickel is one of the largest taxpayers.

The key moment which can remedy this situation is the election of the new enlarged Board of Directors at the Extraordinary General Meeting called by UC RUSAL. UC RUSAL’s shareholders discussed the possible composition of the new Board of Norilsk Nickel and believe that to return the company to normal and provide for its sustainable development, it is necessary to secure four representatives of the state on the Board. To create a balanced board and represent the interests of all groups of shareholders, the Board should also include three representatives of UC RUSAL, three representatives of Interros and three independent directors.

“It is a logical and necessary decision to strengthen the presence of the state in one of the largest Russian companies for the period when the Government provides active support to the strategic industries through a series of economic measures. It will help overcome the developing crisis in Norilsk Nickel’s management, improve its financial situation and business development, and secure growth in the interests of all shareholders,” noted Victor Vekselberg, Chairman of UC RUSAL’s Board of Directors.

UC RUSAL plans to have active consultations with the Government on the composition of Norilsk Nickel’s Board of Directors and invites Interros to take part in this process.

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