Russia: Is the Kremlin Ending TNK-BP's Infighting?

May 30, 2012 | 10:01 GMT

The TNK-BP offices in central Moscow



Mikhail Fridman, the CEO of Russian-British joint energy venture TNK-BP, announced May 28 that he would leave his post in June. TNK-BP's co-owners, British energy firm BP and Russia's Alfa-Access-Renova (AAR) consortium, have been involved in bitter disputes, creating chaos for the joint venture. Its management structure has collapsed, leaving BP in a tough financial situation, although Fridman's surprise exit could break the TNK-BP's cycle of internal disputes. However, the move comes just as former Deputy Prime Minister and energy czar Igor Sechin, who has wanted for years to increase the Kremlin's control over TNK-BP, has been directed by Russian President Vladimir Putin to clean up Russia's oil sector.

TNK-BP CEO Mikhail Fridman's resignation could indicate Kremlin involvement. ...

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