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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Gas Monopoly Rules Out Rosneft Bid

Russian gas giant Gazprom ruled out Thursday taking part in the new privatization tender for the Rosneft oil company, Interfax reported.

Gazprom chief Rem Vyakhirev told journalists in Minsk, Belarus, that it was not a good time for the natural gas monopoly to be acquiring further assets, and hence, that it was not interested in the 75 percent stake in Rosneft which the government hopes to sell in October.

"For us, it is not the best time to be buying anything," Vyakhirev was quoted by Interfax as saying. "We are right in the middle of the opposite process, selling that which we don't need. Except for our core system, we are selling everything."

Gazprom teamed up with strategic partner Anglo-Dutch major Royal Dutch/Shell and Russian oil giant LUKoil with a plan to bid for Rosneft, but the group declined to bid during two sell-off attempts earlier this year.

Also Thursday, Shell managing director, Jeroen van den Veer said that despite his company's interest in Russia, the conditions were still too difficult and unstable, and that a bid on Rosneft was unlikely.

"We are very interested in investment in Russia but we have to look at the conditions carefully," he said.