Russia's Sberbank urges Glencore to resolve dispute over oil bill

The logo of commodities trader Glencore is pictured in front of the company's headquarters in Baar, Switzerland, September 30, 2015. REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann/File Photo
  • This content was produced in Russia where the law restricts coverage of Russian military operations in Ukraine

MOSCOW, Dec 26 (Reuters) - Sberbank (SBER.MM) on Monday accused Glencore (GLEN.L) of choosing not to foot a bill for oil supplied via the Russian lender, saying the global commodities trader could have found a way to pay up without violating Western sanctions.

Sberbank has taken legal action to recover debt and penalties from Glencore Energy UK Ltd over the two consignments, supplied by a subsidiary of Russia's largest bank in March. They were worth roughly 58 million euros ($62 million) each, according to Moscow court filings.

"Glencore is refusing to pay, citing sanctions," Sberbank First Deputy Chairman Alexander Vedyakhin told reporters.

"There are different ways of working without violating sanctions... This issue could have been resolved, but unfortunately Glencore is refusing any communications with us."

Glencore declined to comment.

The trader this month asked the Moscow court to move the case to Singapore.

In March, as Western sanctions over Russia's actions in Ukraine started coming into force, Glencore said it would not enter into new trading business in respect of Russian-origin commodities unless directed by the relevant government authorities.

It also said it would honour its legal obligations under pre-existing contracts, subject to complying with all applicable sanctions.

($1 = 0.9413 euros)

Reporting by Alexander Marrow; editing by John Stonestreet

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