[04/06] RUSSIA - Up to €8bn of the soon-to-be-created Russian National Welfare Fund will be invested in the stock market, finance minister Alexei Kudrin has announced.

The investment structure of the fund will be similar to that of the Norwegian Government Pension Fund - Global, Kudrin said at a meeting of finance ministers in Oslo.

The €221bn Norwegian reserve fund increased its maximum equity holdings from 40% to 60% of the portfolio just over a month ago.

Russia will be split its current €85bn stabilisation fund into a reserve fund to brace against future budget shortfalls and a €19bn National Welfare Fund. While both will be fed from Russia's oil revenues, the reserve fund, like its predecessor, will remain managed by the Central Bank and solely invest in bonds denominated in various currencies.

The Welfare Fund, also known as future generation fund, will have a more growth-oriented investment structure and Kudrin said either a separate agency or some company will manage the investment.