BP downplays Gazprom's TNK bid


BP has downplayed press reports claiming Russian gas monopoly Gazprom is focused on acquiring half of Russo-British venture Tyumen Oil Co in a $25 billion (£13.3 billion) deal.

Russian media said talks were ongoing between Gazprom and TNK-BP's Russian shareholders about a sale.

Business newspaper Vedomosti claimed Gazprom was in talks to buy the 50 per cent of TNK-BP that the oil giant does not own.

But BP has insisted that it is committed to keeping its stake in the venture, which was formed three years ago.

TNK's share of the business is jointly owned by a consortium led by Alfa Group and Access-Renova.

Vedomosti said relations between Gazprom and TNK-BP became strained after the Russian state-owned entity blocked the firm from developing its Kovykta gas field to ship gas to China for several years.

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