The head of LUKoil Overseas has appeared on the Rossiya 24 television channel and said his company has turned down an offer to purchase ExxonMobil's share in Iraq's West Qurna-1 oil field.
Andrei Kuzyaev said the West Kurna-1 project was a large-scale endeavor and LUKoil Overseas chooses to concentrate its efforts in Iraq on the West Qurna-2 field where the Russian company has a 75-percent stake.
ExxonMobil offered its 60-percent stake in the $50-billion West Qurna-1 project to LUKoil in November.
West Qurna-1 is estimated to hold some 9 billion barrels of oil.
China National Petroleum Corporation has been expressing great interest in purchasing the U.S. company's shares in the West Qurna-1 project.
Iraqi officials have indicated they favor the Chinese company's participation.
Based on reporting by Rossiya 24 TV and ITAR-TASS