New Uralkali owners plan CEO change, Belarus talks
Reviving the potash alliance could help Belarus, but experts say industry overcapacity may make a deal hard to achieve.
"A negotiation process would not be fast," said sector analyst Boris Krasnojenov of Renaissance Capital in Moscow.
"There are many points that could be discussed; plus, if we move back to a 'price over volume' strategy, someone would have to slash production and Uralkali is unlikely to be interested in doing it," Krasnojenov said.
Uralkali has not ruled out reviving the partnership and said on Thursday it would also consider new trading joint ventures to replace the alliance. It plans to boost 2014 potash production by 20 percent.
It remains unclear when talks with Lukashenko might start and whether the new CEO appointment would also mean changes in Uralkali's sales department, currently headed by Oleg Petrov.
"It would be a mistake to lose Petrov, he is a very suitable man for the Russian fertilizer industry," a former chief executive of Russian fertiliser company Phosagro, Maxim Volkov, told Reuters.
Uralkali, Uralchem and Kerimov's investment vehicle Nafta Moskva declined to comment on management and trading strategy.