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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

TNK Adds 2 to Supervisory Board

The biggest cheerleader for Tyumen Oil Co., or TNK, in former U.S. President Bill Clinton's administration has been appointed to the oil company's supervisory board.

James Harmon was president of the U.S. Export-Import Bank in 2000 when it extended half a billion dollars in loan guarantees to TNK. The financing deal was controversial, and then-U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright originally blocked the deal in 1999 by invoking a national security law.

BP had lobbied for the rejection of the Ex-Im Bank guarantees after its subsidiary Sidanco lost a key production facility to TNK through a rigged bankruptcy auction. Harmon was able to push the deal through after BP and TNK agreed to settle the dispute.

Harmon left Ex-Im Bank in 2001 after serving a four-year term. He then founded his own consultancy, Harmon & Co.

Adrian Lajous, former head of Mexico's state oil company, also will be joining the board, TNK said Thursday in a statement.

He will continue his involvement with the state oil company as board chairman of the Pemex group of operating companies. Lajous has been president of the Oxford Institute for Energy Studies and was made senior energy adviser to McKinsey & Co. in January 2001.

"The sheer strength in depth and quality of the TNK advisory council speaks for itself," TNK CEO Simon Kukes said in the statement. "It underlines TNK's commitment to achieving standards of corporate governance and financial integrity."

TNK has said that this advisory council, now separate from the board of directors and made up of independent members, will eventually replace the board. The first appointments, those of industry heavyweights Peter Walters and William Purves, were announced last month.

The rest of the appointments will be made known by the fall, TNK officials said.

Putting together an independent board of directors is a prerequisite to taking TNK, privately held by the Alfa and Access/Renova groups, public.