MILAN, April 24 The Karachaganak Petroleum
Operating Group (KPO) has started talks on Kazakhstan taking a
stake in the oil and gas consortium, Italy's Il Sole 24 Ore
reported on Saturday.
Kazakhstan has long sought a stake in the giant
Karachaganak oil and gas field in the west of the Central Asian
country. KPO is led by Italy's Eni SpA (ENI.MI) and Britain's
BG Group Plc BG.L, each with 32.5 percent.
Talks have started in London "but are showing themselves to
be more and more difficult", the business daily said, citing
sources close to the issue.
BG is more resistant to the Kazakh move since it would mean
the British company reducing its stake, Il Sole 24 Ore said.
Eni had no immediate comment. KPO also includes Russia's
LUKOIL (LKOH.MM) and U.S. major Chevron Corp (CVX.N).
Kazakhstan accused KPO this month of violating immigration
laws, stepping up pressure as it seeks a stake in the field.
In March, Kazakhstan's financial police accused
Karachaganak of illegally earning $708 million in 2008 by
producing more oil and gas than originally agreed with the
The group has denied any wrongdoing.
(Reporting by Ian Simpson; Editing by Lincoln Feast)