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Russia claims £130m taxes from BP venture

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Daily Telegraph: Russia claims £130m taxes from BP venture

By Russell Hotten
Last Updated: 12:33am BST 24/04/2008

Russian authorities have turned up the heat on BP’s joint venture TNK-BP, filing a claim for 6bn roubles (£130m) in back taxes.

It comes as the deputy chief executive of Gazprom, Alexander Medvedev, hinted that the state energy company might be losing patience with BP over delays in selling a huge gas field.

TNK-BP, which paid $1.4bn (£707m) in November 2006 to settle back tax claims, now faces an additional bill, according to the Russian business daily Vedomosti. The claims, confirmed by TNK-BP, relate to value added and extraction taxes.

Gazprom is negotiating with BP to take control of the vast Kovykta gas field. Gazprom agreed to buy TNK-BP’s 63pc stake in the field last June, but has failed to conclude terms.

Mr Medvedev said in Moscow yesterday that Gazprom was still awaiting additional information about the field.

“The ball is not in our court,” he said. “We, frankly speaking, are a little disappointed.”

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/money/main.jhtml?xml=/money/2008/04/24/cnbp124.xml

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