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Putin Didn't Expect BP Spat

Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said Friday in Bryansk that he was "completely unaware" that BP and TNK-BP could disagree over the British oil company's planned cooperation agreement with Rosneft.

"I met with the head of BP, and he didn't say a word to me about it," he said. Neither TNK-BP — BP's 50-50 joint venture with a group of Russian investors — nor the British company informed Rosneft that "there could be any difficulties," Putin said.

TNK-BP's board delayed a vote on replacing BP in an alliance with Rosneft for a second week, as directors from Britain and an independent member asked for more time to study proposals, the venture said Friday.

(Bloomberg)

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