Is Rosneft about to buy its first foreign refining assets? That is the speculation doing the rounds today as Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez arrived in Moscow on a state visit. Talks with Russia’s leaders will focus on plans for cooperation between the two countries, including in the energy sector.
Rosneft has been in talks to buy a 50 per cent stake in Germany’s Ruhr Oel from the Venezuelan state company Petroleos de Venezuela. Ruhr Oel is a 50:50 joint venture between PDVSA and BP. BP has a right of refusal on PDVSA’S stake.
The deal could be worth between $1bn and $2bn. What better time to announce a deal than during a state visit? One interesting element of the potential transaction is that it could lead to BP eventually being given the right to explore for oil in the Russian waters of the Arctic Ocean.