April 6, 2012 / 2:32 PM / in 6 years

BP appoints new Russia head

MOSCOW (Reuters) - The head of BP’s (BP.L) Russian business is leaving Moscow the year after the British oil major failed to clinch a major Arctic strategic partnership with state-controlled Rosneft, the company said on Friday.

Jeremy Huck will be replaced by BP Russia’s chief financial officer, Richard Sloan, in a “planned rotation” after a three-and-a-half year assignment, a spokesman for BP in Moscow said.

    BP’s partnership with Rosneft (ROSN.MM), signed in early 2011 in the presence of Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, collapsed amid legal wrangling with the co-owners of its Russian venture TNK-BP TNBP.MM. ExxonMobil (XOM.N) went on to team up with Rosneft.

    After the failure, BP’s Moscow office was raided by Russian officials in connection with a lawsuit over the Rosneft deal brought by a minority shareholder in TNK-BP’s listed unit. A Russian court eventually found in favor of BP in the case.

    Separate arbitration proceedings continue between AAR, representing four billionaire shareholders who own half of TNK-BP, and BP over the failed Rosneft deal. AAR argues that the deal violated the TNK-BP shareholders’ agreement and the joint venture sustained damages by being cut out of the partnership.

    Reporting by Vladimir Soldatkin, Editing by Douglas Busvine and Jane Baird

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