Russian oil firm Rosneft; Photo: Reuters
BP said Sunday it is exiting its share in Rosneft, a state-controlled Russian oil and gas company, in reaction to Russia's invasion of Ukraine.
BP has held a 19.75% stake in Rosneft since 2013. That stake is currently valued at USD 14 billion.
London-based BP also said its CEO, Bernard Looney, and former BP executive Bob Dudley will immediately resign from Rosneft's board.
Like so many, I have been deeply shocked and saddened by the situation unfolding in Ukraine and my heart goes out to everyone affected. It has caused us to fundamentally rethink BP's position with Rosneft, Looney said in a statement.
BP Chairman Helge Lund said BP has operated in Russia for more than 30 years.
However, this military action represents a fundamental change, Lund said in a statement.
Kwasi Kwarteng, the U.K.'s secretary of state for business and energy, said he welcomed BP's decision.
Russia's unprovoked invasion of Ukraine must be a wake up call for British businesses with commercial interests in Putin's Russia, Kwarteng said in a tweet.
BP said it will take two non-cash charges in the first quarter to reflect the change, including an USD 11 billion charge for foreign exchange losses that have accumulated since 2013.
Rosneft's partnerships with Western oil and gas companies have been stymied before.
In 2011, Exxon Mobil, led at the time by future U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, signed a deal with Rosneft to potentially drill in the oil-rich Russian Arctic. But Exxon ended that partnership in 2017, citing U.S. and European sanctions against Russia.
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First Published: Feb 28 2022 | 7:54 AM IST