MOSCOW Dec 6 Russia's No. 2 oil producer,
Lukoil, has been in talks with international majors
about selling its stake in a consortium developing a large oil
project in Venezuela, Kommersant daily reported on Friday,
Lukoil declined immediate comment.
The company said in October that it wanted to sell its 20
percent stake in the Russian Junin-6 consortium developing heavy
oil in the Orinoco basin to focus on other projects. The group
is led by Russian state oil major Rosneft and also
includes Gazprom Neft.
Rosneft's head, Igor Sechin, has said it is considering
buying Lukoil's stake in the group.
Kommersant, citing sources "familiar with the situation",
said Rosneft offered a lower price than Lukoil had asked, after
which Lukoil started talks with international majors.
The newspaper said that Lukoil has been in talks with
Norway's Statoil, Chevron Corp., France's Total
, Korea National Oil Corp (KNOC), China's Sinopec and
CNOOC Ltd and India's ONGC as well as
Russia's Bashneft and Zarubezhneft.
The sources said CNOOC was the front runner to buy the
The consortium owns a 40 percent stake in the project, which
started production in September 2012. Venezuela's state-run
PDVSA has 60 percent.
Russian media have suggested that Lukoil's stake in the
Russian consortium could be worth around $200 million.
Venezuela is the world's 11th largest crude exporter but
foreign companies operating there have faced price controls and
currency devaluations along with threats of nationalisation,
leading several to quit the country.