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BP offloads its almost 20% stake in Russia’s Rosneft

BP offloads its almost 20% stake in Russias Rosneft

March 01, 2022: -On Sunday, British energy giant BP announced it was offloading its 19.75% stake in Rosneft, a Russian-controlled oil company.

BP CEO Bernard Looney and former exec Bob Dudley are resigning from Rosneft’s board, immediately effective. Looney had been a director of Rosneft as two BP-nominated directors since 2020. Dudley has been a director since 2013, the company said.

BP has worked in Russia for over 30 years, but the Russian invasion of Ukraine is forcing the company to reevaluate its holding.

“This military action represents a fundamental change,” BP chair Helge Lund said. “It has led the BP board to conclude that our involvement with Rosneft, a state-owned enterprise, simply cannot continue,” B.P. chair added.

BP faces surmounting pressure from the British government to exit its stake in the company, and The Wall Street Journal reported last week. The paper said that British officials were accusing Rosneft of fueling the Kremlin’s advance into Ukraine.

UK’s business secretary Kwasi Kwarteng, who held a talk last week with BP, said he welcomed the company’s decision on Twitter.

“Russia’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine must be a wake-up call for British businesses with commercial interests in Putin’s Russia,” Kwarteng said.

According to the Journal, Rosneft had contributed about a third of BP’s oil-and-gas production.

As a result of offloading its stake, B.P. said it expects to report a material non-cash charge with its first-quarter 2022 results in May.

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BP offloads its almost 20% stake in Russia’s Rosneft