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U.S. Blocks Rosneft's Acquisition Of Morgan Stanley Oil Trading Firm


U.S. authorities have thwarted an attempt by Russia’s state-controlled oil giant Rosneft to boost its global reach by blocking its acquisition of a Morgan Stanley oil-trading firm.

Rosneft -- which is head by Russian President Vladimir Putin’s long-standing ally Igor Sechin -- said on December 22 that the deal was terminated because U.S. regulators refused to grant clearance.

Morgan Stanley confirmed the deal was terminated and says it will now consider other options.

Valued at between $300 million and $400 million, the deal was agreed in December 2013 when Sechin said it would spearhead Rosneft’s growth in the international oil market.

But Western sanctions against Russia over its March 2014 annexation of Crimea, as well as plummeting oil prices, have hurt Rosneft’s ability to finance the operations.

Sanctions also have prompted Rosneft’s global partners, including ExxonMobil, to withdrawn from projects to develop Arctic offshore oil deposits.

Based on reporting by Reuters and “The Wall Street Journal"
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