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MOL wants to reinvest INA profit; Croatian state may want dividend

Hungarian oil and gas company MOL says its Croatian unit INA ought to invest 2010 profits, amid reports the Croatian state, which owns almost 45% of the company, wants a dividend to support public finances, Reuters reported.

“The right thing for INA and its shareholders now is to increase the value of the company by pursuing further necessary investments. It is the time of sowing, not of harvesting,” MOL spokesman Domokos Szollár told Reuters. “By retaining profits INA would be able to reinforce its financial position by reducing indebtedness,” he added.

MOL owns 47.25% of INA and the Croatian government holds 44.84%.

INA had net profit of HRK 958 million in 2010 (€130 million) after two years of losses. Shareholders are to decide on dividend on the profit at a general meeting tentatively planned for May.

The government has not stated its position on the matter, but local media reported the state might want dividends from its bigger companies.