Gazprom Agrees to Join Eni’s Oil Project in Libya

OAO Gazprom Neft, the oil arm of Russia’s natural-gas exporter, OAO Gazprom, today signed an agreement to take a stake in Eni SpA’s Elephant oil project in Libya.

Gazprom Chief Executive Officer Alexei Miller signed the agreement in Rome following talks between Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi.

Gazprom will buy a 33.3 percent stake in the international group developing the project, half of Eni’s current holding. Miller valued the stake at $178 million. The project’s oil resources are estimated at 212 million tons, the Russian company said in a Eurobond prospectus in November.

Also during the meeting, Vnesheconombank, Russia’s development bank, signed a cooperation agreement with Italian state lender Cassa Depositi e Prestiti. The accord will focus on financing long-term projects in infrastructure, energy and the environment, VEB Chairman Vladimir Dmitriev told reporters in Rome. He gave no details.

Russia and Italy signed another agreement on the transit of weapons, ammunition and military personnel through Russian airspace to Afghanistan, according to a statement from the Kremlin press service.

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