Energy & Environment

BP divesting stake in Russian oil giant over Ukraine invasion

Multinational oil and gas company BP will be divesting its approximately 20 percent stake in a Russian state-owned oil firm due to Moscow’s “act of aggression in Ukraine.”

BP announced it will be offloading its 19.75 percent stake in the Rosneft oil firm, which it has held since 2013. BP Chief Executive Officer Bernard Looney will also be resigning from Rosneft’s board of directors as will former BP Chief Executive Bob Dudley, who was nominated to Rosneft’s board by BP.

Looney said in Sunday’s statement that he was “shocked and saddened by the situation unfolding in Ukraine.”

Looney had been a director of Rosneft since 2020, and Dudley had served as a director since 2013.

“Russia’s attack on Ukraine is an act of aggression which is having tragic consequences across the region. bp has operated in Russia for over 30 years, working with brilliant Russian colleagues. However, this military action represents a fundamental change. It has led the bp board to conclude, after a thorough process, that our involvement with Rosneft, a state-owned enterprise, simply cannot continue,” BP Chairman Helge Lund said in the statement.

“We can no longer support bp representatives holding a role on the Rosneft board,” added Lund. “The Rosneft holding is no longer aligned with bp’s business and strategy and it is now the board’s decision to exit bp’s shareholding in Rosneft. The bp board believes these decisions are in the best long-term interests of all our shareholders.”

The BBC, citing a British government official, reported that British Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng had spoken to Looney last week and left “no doubt about the seriousness of government concerns about BP’s overexposure to Russian interests.” 

Tags BP Oil companies Rosneft Russia Ukraine

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