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Gazprom's 2002 full-year results suggest the company has done little to bring costs under control, and that profits are suffering accordingly.
On the surface things look rosy, with profits of $861mn up sharply on the previous year, despite a 9.6pc drop in sales. But many analysts were disappointed because the bottom line was around 60pc below their estimates.
There is particular concern over costs, especially an increase in the company's non-business related expenses. "Social expenditure was up by 25pc, insurance rose by 53pc, pension costs rose by 79pc and other, as yet undisclosed, expenses rose by 106pc," says Pavel Kushnir of investment bank UFG. …