4.1 Scenario 1: The Russian economy keeps growing, Nord Stream 2 will be completed, gas demand will rise sharply and Gazprom must pay out 50% of its net income. (probability: 55%)
This scenario offers a huge investment opportunity because Gazprom will increase its earnings significantly. If Nord Stream 2 and the Power of Siberia achieve a 100% workload while gas prices in Europe and Chine rise and capex falls, Gazprom can easily double its net profits and will achieve average annual earnings of at least 100 rubles per share. If Gazprom is forced to raise the payout ratio to 50% (= 50 rubles), buying the shares now could lead to outstanding returns. A fair share price would be in the range of 800-1000 rubles which is an increase of 425%-550%.
4.2 Scenario 2: Nord Stream 2 will be cancelled but gas demand rises in Asia and the payout ratio increase to over 30%. (probability: 30%)
This scenario is not realistic because Nord Stream 2 has strong support in Europe and the pipeline is right on schedule. However, even in the case of Nord Stream 2 cancellation, Gazprom is strong enough to increase its earnings because of the strong demand in China and the Power of Siberia which will add 38 bn cubic meters per year to the company's annual gas supply. A cancellation of the China pipeline won't happen because the political relationship between the two countries is good and both parties are in favour for the Power of Siberia. It is likely that China will ask for a second pipeline which is already discussed at Gazprom. This scenario will increase Gazprom's average annual earnings for the next decade to 75-80 rubles per share and provides a dividend of 24 rubles. A fair share price would be in the range of 500-600 rubles which is an increase of 225%-300%.
4.3 Scenario 3: Nord Stream 2 cancellation, recession in Russia and China, gas demand and dividend remain at current levels (probability: 15%)
This scenario is unrealistic because the Russian economy is on track for a long term recovery. Russia survived the big recession during the Crimea Crisis aftermath and another escalation with Europe or the USA is not a real threat at the moment. A Chinese recession is more likely but the gas demand will increase in the long term. By the end of the 2020s, the Chinese middle class will be more important and wealthier than today and more Chinese people will live in heated homes or flats with gas heatings. The Chinese gas demand will triple by 2040 and Gazprom is well-positioned to profit from this trend. Nevertheless, scenario 3 could occur but Gazprom's earnings will be stable (around 50-60 rubles) as long as the company can reduce its capex and it will pay a stable dividend of at least 10-15 rubles. A fair share price would be at least in the range of 300-450 rubles which means that the stock will double or triple from the current cheap and low levels.