Russian state authorities shouldn’t interfere in TNK-BP’s affairs, Ambassador says

The Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland to Russia Sir Anthony Russell Brenton said at a press conference hosted by Interfax-Ural and Tyumenskaya Linia in Tyumen on July 2, 2008 that it was sad to hear TNK-BP’s Russian and British stockholders could not agree on certain points. He noted the embassy was willing to facilitate the conflict resolution. However, no direct interference in the stockholders’ affairs was deemed acceptable; nor should Russian state authorities step in.

Anthony Brenton believes the shareholders must handle the problem themselves; otherwise Russia will no longer be attractive for foreign investors. In fact, they might be already asking themselves if investing in Russian economy is expedient.

The first clashes between TNK-BP’s Russian and British shareholders emerged in May 2008 and had to do with the company’s development strategy. The Russian party feels the company should enter the foreign markets even if this creates competition for British Petroleum. Besides, the parties cannot agree on the ratio of Russian and foreign experts within the company.

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