July 6, 2015 / 7:38 AM / 2 years ago

Poland's Lotos to restart dividend payouts before 2020

WARSAW, July 6 (Reuters) - Grupa Lotos, Poland’s second-largest refiner by output, plans to restart dividend payments before 2020, its chief executive was quoted as saying by the Parkiet newspaper on Monday.

“We want to start paying out dividends within the time frame of our strategy. Probably it will not happen next year though, since not that long ago our shareholders agreed on multi-billion investments,” Pawel Olechnowicz was quoted as saying.

“The first dividend will likely be modest but we will be trying to increase it gradually”.

Olechnowicz added the company’s strategy plan for 2016-2020 would not assume launching new business areas.

He repeated Lotos planned to buy another oilfield in Norway with a production potential of around 250,000 tonnes annually, similar to its so-called Heimdal assets -- oil and gas licences off the coast of Norway.

If Lotos buys such an asset by the end of this year, it would be able, under Norwegian tax regulations, to retrieve within three years the money it invested in its ill-fated Norwegian Yme oil field, Olechnowicz said.

He added Lotos could either participate in the development of the Yme field, or sell the 20 percent stake it owns. (Reporting by Agnieszka Barteczko; Editing by Mark Potter)

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