June 15, 2012 / 7:28 PM / 7 years ago

Mexico's Slim to keep YPF stake at least short-term

A flag with the YPF logo is waved in front of the Argentine Congress in Buenos Aires, April 25, 2012. REUTERS/Marcos Brindicci

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - Mexican tycoon Carlos Slim and his family plan to keep their 8.4 percent stake in Argentine energy company YPF (YPFD.BA) at least for the short-term, a spokesman for the billionaire told Reuters on Friday.

Slim, the world’s richest man, and his family disclosed on Thursday they received the YPF stock in lieu of a loan guarantee. It was not a direct purchase.

“We see the company as very solid, with very good growth prospects and that’s why we decided to keep the shares,” Arturo Elias Ayub, the spokesman, said. “We are going to keep them at least for the short-term. Later on we will analyze our mid-, long-term options. The idea is not to sell them soon.”

YPF said in a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Thursday that the Slims now own 8.4 percent of Class D shares of the company. A YPF official said the D series shares accounted for 99.9 percent of the company’s value.

Argentine President Cristina Fernandez seized control of YPF from Spain’s Repsol (REP.MC) in April, accusing the Spanish oil company of investing too little and making Argentina increasingly reliant on pricey imports.

Reporting by Cyntia Barrera; Editing by Simon Gardner and Leslie Adler

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