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Russian Consortium Plans Billion-dollar Suit Against BP

April 12, 2011
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The Russian conglomerate AAR is planning a billion- dollar lawsuit against British oil multinational BP because of its planned cooperation with another Russian oil-firm, according to Russian business daily Kommersant.

AAR, a group representing Russian billionaire partners in TNK-BP, a joint-venture Russian partner of BP, claims that BP's planned cooperation with Rosneft violates the terms of their own agreement.

AAR (Alfa-Access-Renova) says that TNK-BP's shareholder agreement prohibits both parties from taking part in ventures with other Russian oil and gas companies without prior consent from the joint board of directors.

The billionaires' group -- made up of Mikhail Fridman, Viktor Vekselberg, German Khan and Leonard Blavatnik -- now wants up to $10 billion of compensation from BP and state-owned oil giant Rosneft.

BP and Rosneft had agreed in January to swap $7.6 billion of shares each and enter a "strategic cooperation" in the development of Arctic oilfields.

An arbitration tribunal in Stockholm has put a temporary stop to the plans, while the deadline for the share-swap runs out on Thursday.

Source: Copyright 2011 dpa Deutsche Presse-Agentur GmbH

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