Gazprom Nears Libya Gas Asset Deal

Gazprom is set to cement its entry into the Libyan oil and gas market this month by finalizing an agreement with Italian energy giant Eni as part of a broader asset swap, both companies said.

The move comes after a sustained diplomatic push by the Kremlin to improve relations with the North African state and could see Eni developing projects along Russia's Arctic coast.

The announcement came after a meeting Monday in Moscow between Gazprom CEO Alexei Miller and his counterpart at Eni, Paolo Scaroni, and would herald Gazprom's entry into the Elephant oil project in Libya.

The agreement is part of a memorandum signed by the Italian firm when it bought into Gazprom to help the Russian company expand its business overseas.

Speaking Tuesday, Scaroni said Eni had an interest in developing various projects in the Arctic Sea, Interfax reported.