ENRC-and-KazakhmysKazakhstan's president is pushing FTSE 100 miners Eurasian Natural Resources Corporation (ENRC) and Kazakhmys into listing some of their shares on the country's stock exchange in growing signs of state intervention in the private sector.

He wants the prominent London-listed companies to sell shares to Kazakh retail investors as part of the "people's IPO" programme he has launched in the run-up to presidential elections.

Nursultan Nazarbayev said that the government would first sell $500m (£306m) of shares in KazMunaiGas EP, a London-listed subsdiary of the state energy company.

He added that this ought to be followed, over time, by sales of shares to citizens in Kazakhmys and ENRC, plus the Kazakh units of ArcelorMittal, the global steel company, and Glencore, the Swiss trading company.

"Our citizens will be able to become co-owners of the largest companies in Kazakhstan," Mr Nazarbayev said, in a statement on his website.

The Kazakh government appears not to have discussed these ambitions with the four companies and their managements.

Frank Pannier, chief executive of ArcelorMittal's Kazakh operations, said he was "not aware" of the plan, which was "just an idea of government". ENRC and Kazakhmys both declined to comment.

ENRC and Kazakhmys are both already listed on the Kazakhstan Stock Exchange as well as in London.

"In theory what it means is that the government sells some of its shares in ENRC and Kazakhmys," said Milena Venturini, head of research at Renaissance Capital in Almaty, the Kazakh financial capital.

"With Kazzinc [the Kazakh unit of Glencore] and ArcelorMittal the only way to read it is that over time the owners would be encouraged to float shares locally."

Mr Nazarbayev first announced the People's IPO programme at the start of last month, as he confirmed his plan to run in elections this April.

"I think that 'floating' already profitable companies, that are already floated does make sense, in terms of electoral sense," said Jean-Christophe Lermusiaux, head of research at Visor Capital.

"How do you float something like Kazpost or Kazatomprom, if it's not listed yet? Technically it takes time, and the elections are soon."