Gazprom looks at Libya's oil reserves

Feb. 16, 2011 at 10:35 AM
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MOSCOW, Feb. 16 (UPI) -- Russian energy company Gazprom will take part of Eni's stake in an oil field in Libya as part of an asset swap, a Russian presidential aide said.

Sergei Prikhodko, an aide to Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, said Gazprom would join Italian energy company Eni at the Elephant oil field, Russia's state-run news agency RIA Novosti reports.

Gazprom is to take a stake in Eni's shares of the project. In turn, Eni could join in the development of Siberian assets, the news agency adds.

The deal would be hammered out during Medvedev's visit to Rome this week, Prikhodko said.

Russian interest in Libyan oil surfaced last year when Boris Zilbermints, the deputy chief executive of Gazprom Neft, said his company is exploring various business opportunities in the oil-rich country.

Gazprom said in June it planned to join the Elephant oil field through an asset swap with Eni.

The Elephant oil field was discovered in southern Libya in 1997. Estimated recoverable reserves are listed at around 700 million barrels of oil.

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