Co-founder of Russian oil company Lukoil steps down

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Leonid Fedun, vice-president of Russian oil company Lukoil, attends a session of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF) in Saint Petersburg, Russia, June 3, 2021. REUTERS/Evgenia Novozhenina

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MOSCOW, June 27 (Reuters) - Leonid Fedun has stepped down as vice president of Russian oil producer Lukoil (LKOH.MM) because of family reasons and after reaching retirement age, the company said on Monday, months after sanctions forced another co-founder to quit as CEO.

Fedun, 66, and Vagit Alekperov, 71, co-founded Lukoil in the 1990s after the collapse of the Soviet Union, picking up the remains of previously state-controlled oil and gas fields.

Lukoil said in March that it was concerned by the "tragic events in Ukraine" and supported the negotiations to end the conflict, delivering rare public remarks against what Moscow calls a special military operation.

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Alekperov, who resigned in April after personal sanctions imposed by Britain and Australia, and Fedun together control about 40% of Lukoil, which has grown into Russia's second biggest oil company since its formation in 1991. read more

Lukoil said that Fedun was leaving due to 'reaching retirement age and family reasons', without providing details. The statement did not mention the earlier departure of Alekperov or whether the two events were connected.

While Alekperov as chief executive was dealing mainly with Lukoil's expansion at home, Fedun was overseeing its business abroad, ranging from costly offshore projects in West Africa to Mexico. Lukoil has left some projects recently.

Last month, in his last public appearance before his resignation, Fedun called on Russia to cut its oil production by 20%-30% to 7 million-8 million barrels per day to get a better price and avoid selling it at a discount. The idea was rejected by Moscow's senior energy officials. read more

A passionate football lover and owner of a top-tier Russian soccer club, Spartak, Fedun said on Monday he would continue to focus on the club after resignation from Lukoil.

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Reporting by Reuters Editing by David Goodman and Bernadette Baum

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