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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Business in Brief

Gazprom, BP Ink LNG Deal

Gazprom and Britain's BP have signed a deal to supply liquefied natural gas to Atlantic basin countries, Gazprom said Wednesday.

Under the deal, BP will supply LNG to Gazprom's British-based branch, Gazprom Marketing & Trading, which will market it across the Atlantic basin, Gazprom said in a statement. The companies would not specify to which countries the LNG would be supplied. (AP)

Gazprom, Ukraine in Talks

Gazprom CEO Alexei Miller met Ukrainian Energy Minister Yuriy Boyko in Moscow, Gazprom said in a statement Wednesday.

The two men discussed cooperation this year and in 2007, the company said in the statement. (Bloomberg)

Rosneft Not on the Market

Rosneft CFO Peter O'Brien said, the state-controlled oil company has no plans to sell additional shares after holding the country's biggest initial public offering in July.

The company is counting "on other forms of capital" available to it, backed by annual oil output growth of 9-10 percent, O'Brien said Wednesday in an interview. The company raised $10.6 billion by selling about 15 percent of its stock. (Bloomberg)

Total Halts Kazakh Talks

ALMATY, Kazakhstan -- French oil company Total has suspended talks over its participation in a project to develop Kazakhstan's Kurmangazy offshore oil field, a senior company official said Wednesday.

Philippe Rochoux, general director of Total E&P Kazakhstan, said the company was looking at other possibilities after the first well drilled at the site turned out to be dry. (Reuters)

Venezuela Supplying Refiner

VILNIUS, Lithuania -- Lithuanian refinery Mazeikiu Nafta, whose overland supply pipeline has been cut by Russia, said Wednesday that it was receiving crude oil supplies from Venezuela for the first time.

"Mazeikiu Nafta is considering various alternative crude supply sources and is selecting the most effective supply routes," spokesman Giedrius Karsokas said. (Reuters)

Petroneft to Go Public

EDINBURGH, Scotland -- Petroneft Resources, a Dublin-based oil and gas company that operates in Western Siberia, plans to sell $15.5 million of shares and go public on the stock exchanges in London and Ireland this month.

Petroneft, which owns license 61 in Tomsk Oblast, Siberia, that contains two proven oil fields with 33.54 million barrels of oil, plans to spend the money to develop the license and will drill three wells this winter, the company said in an statement Wednesday. (Bloomberg)

Coal Boss Dead in Crash

Vladimir Lavrik, head of coal firm Yuzhkuzbassugol, died in a helicopter crash in the Kemerovo region on Wednesday, news agencies reported. He was 52.

The MD-600 chopper crashed 16 kilometers from Novokuznetsk, in western Siberia, at 2:50 p.m. Moscow time, killing Lavrik, the pilot and a second passenger. (MT)

Usmanov Considers IPO

Billionaire Alisher Usmanov may sell shares in his Metalloinvest holding company to the public next year or the year after, Vedomosti reported, citing Metalloinvest general director Maxim Gubiyev.

Usmanov, a Russian citizen born in Uzbekistan, controls Mikhailovsky GOK and Lebedinsky GOK, respectively the country's second- and third-biggest iron-ore mines, as well as Nosta Steel and Oskolsky Special Steel. (Bloomberg)

SUAL Weighs Merger

Viktor Vekselberg, the billionaire owner of SUAL Group, said his company would decide on a merger with its bigger rival, Russian Aluminium, within a month, Interfax reported, citing Vekselberg at a meeting with President Vladimir Putin in Sochi.

Vekselberg said a merger with RusAl was the best option for SUAL, Interfax said. (Bloomberg)

Highland Resumes Mining

Highland Gold Mining on Wednesday resumed production at the open-pit section of its Darasun mine in eastern Siberia as investigators entered the underground shaft where a fire killed 25 miners last week.

The open-pit mine accounts for about half of production at Darasun, the smaller of two mines operated by Highland, the country's fourth-largest gold miner. (Reuters)

$1Bln Smuggler Arrested

A Belarussian national suspected of being part of a $1 billion international smuggling ring has been arrested in Moscow, police said Wednesday, RIA-Novosti reported.

The Interior Ministry's organized-crime division said Yury Kreidich was suspected of organizing passage across borders for trains carrying computers, plasma televisions and video equipment into Russia. Customs officials are also suspected, the agency reported. (MT)

Bids for Hungarian Airline

BUDAPDEST -- Russia's AiRUnion consortium and Hungary's ABSK are expected to be among bidders for Hungarian state airline Malev, Vilaggazdasag reported, citing no one.

The Hungarian asset-sales agency invited bids Tuesday for 99.95 percent of Malev, with a bidding deadline of Nov. 3, the newspaper reported. (Bloomberg)

Vnukovo Building Begins

Vnukovo Airport will begin construction this week on a terminal to meet growing demand for domestic and international travel.

Vnukovo will hold a groundbreaking ceremony Sept. 16 for the 200,000-square-meter terminal, which will have an annual capacity of 18 million passengers, an airport spokesman said Wednesday. (Bloomberg)

Railway Cargo Up 3.4%

Russian Railways, the country's railway monopoly, said cargo shipments rose 3.4 percent in the first eight months of this year with increased demand for coal, oil and metals.

Shipments climbed to 859.8 million tons between January and August from the year earlier, the company said in an e-mailed statement Wednesday. (Bloomberg)

Ukraine's Free-Trade Deals

BRUSSELS -- The European Commission said Wednesday that it would launch talks early next year for a broader cooperation agreement with Ukraine, now led by a government more sympathetic to Moscow, including a possible free trade deal.

Yanukovych, friendlier towards Russia than previous governments led by allies of President Viktor Yushchenko, says Ukraine can strike trade deals with both Brussels and Moscow. (Reuters)