Transneft set to buy $1 bln office for Moscow HQ -sources

MOSCOW Wed Dec 4, 2013 10:59am EST

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MOSCOW Dec 4 (Reuters) - Russia's Transneft is in talks to buy an office block for almost $1 billion in the Moscow City area, west of the capital's centre, two sources close to the companies and one close to the negotations told Reuters on Wednesday.

The oil pipeline monopoly is in advanced negotiations on buying the 196,000 square metre building in Moscow's burgeoning financial district next to the Mirax Plaza towers, they said.

The property belongs to companies owned by the head of construction firm Stroygazconsulting Ziyad Manasir and businessman Dmitry Lutsenko, a former part-owner of Mirax, a now-bankrupt developer known for luxury housing.

"Transneft has shown interest in the project," Lutsenko told Reuters, declining to comment further.

Transneft representative Igor Demin told Reuters that the company would benefit from centralising its scattered offices in the capital.

"We are located in different parts of Moscow. It would be practical to have all our employees in one place, but no decision (on a purchase) has yet been taken," he said.

No one at Stroygazconsulting was available to comment. (Reporting by Olga Sichkar and Vladimir Soldatkin; Writing by Alessandra Prentice; Editing by Louise Ireland)

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