Shell to sell all stakes in Gazprom joint ventures

The oil giant said the Russian invasion was “senseless” and that it will divest its stakes worth around three billion dollars.

Simon Neville
Monday 28 February 2022 18:12
Shell said it will get rid of all stakes in joint ventures with Gazprom. (Anna Gowthorpe/PA)
Shell said it will get rid of all stakes in joint ventures with Gazprom. (Anna Gowthorpe/PA)

Oil giant Shell has announced plans to sell its stake in all joint ventures with Russian partner Gazprom, calling Russia’s invasion of the country “senseless” and a threat to European security.

The company said it will sell its 27.5% stake in a Russian liquefied natural gas facility, a 50% stake in an oilfield project in Siberia and an energy joint venture.

It will also end its involvement in the Nord Stream 2 pipeline between Russia and Germany, which has been put on hold by ministers in Berlin.

Shell boss Ben van Beurden said the actions of Russia in Ukraine was “senseless”. (Daniel Leal-Olivas/PA)

Shell chief executive Ben van Beurden said: “We are shocked by the loss of life in Ukraine, which we deplore, resulting from a senseless act of military aggression which threatens European security.”

The move comes a day after UK-based rival BP said it would divest its 25 billion dollar stake in Rosneft, where it owned a 20% shareholding and held two board seats.

Shell said the value of its ventures with Gazprom is around three billion dollars and the hit will be put onto its balance sheet later this year.

Mr van Beurden added: “Our decision to exit is one we take with conviction.

“We cannot – and we will not – stand by. Our immediate focus is the safety of our people in Ukraine and supporting our people in Russia.

“In discussion with governments around the world we will also work through the detailed business implications, including the importance of secure energy supplies to Europe and other markets, in compliance with relevant sanctions.”

Earlier in the day Foreign Secretary Liz Truss named Gazprom as one of the three million Russian companies who would be unable to access any funding from UK financial institutions as part of new sanctions.

This means Gazprom will struggle to refinance its debts in years to come.

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