OVL in swap deals with Russian oil firms

ONGC Videsh Ltd (OVL), the overseas arm of state-owned Oil and Natural Gas Corp, today signed initial agreements for barter of its stake in its Russian unit Imperial Energy for acquisition of 25-30 per cent interest in Sistema-owned JSC Bashneft.

"OVL signed a framework agreement on cooperation in hydrocarbon sector at Delhi with Sistema, the largest diversified public financial corporation in Russia and CIS, during the official visit of the President of the Russian Federation Dmitry Medvedev to India," the company said in a statement in New Delhi.

Bashneft's annual oil output from its fields in Russia is 13 million tonnes. It also owns refineries with aggregate capacity of 20 million tonnes.

Also, OVL is to get part of Sistema's 49 per cent stake in RussNef that operates fields in Russia producing 12 million tonnes of oil along with a stake in Trebs and Titov fields that Bashneft won recently.

OVL, in exchange will give up its 100 per cent stake in Imperial Energy, a 2008 acquisition by the company for a consideration of $2.1 billion. The energy company has a production of 1 million tones of crude annually.

Sistema has a 75 per cent stake in Bashneft, which it controls over 90 per cent along with persons acting in concert.