13 October 2005 -- The Russian government has approved the move by the state-controlled gas monopoly Gazprom to buy the Sibneft oil company.
The deal will give the state control over one-third of Russia's oil output.
Citing the government press service, ITAR-TASS reported today that the government has approved a draft directive instructing government representatives on Gazprom's board to vote in favor of the purchase.
Gazprom, the world's biggest gas producer and a key supplier to Europe, announced last month that it would pay more than $13 billion for 72.7 percent of Sibneft's shares. Gazprom which already held 3 percent of Sibneft, would now have a 75.7 percent stake in the company.
Sibneft is currently controlled by billionaire Chelsea soccer club owner Roman Abramovich.
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