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Argentina Extends Management of YPF for Additional 30 Days

Argentina is extending government oversight of YPF SA after seizing control of the oil producer last month in a dispute over investments and dividend payments.

Planning Minister Julio de Vido and Deputy Economy Minister Axel Kicillof will remain in charge for a further 30 days after the April 16 seizure, according to the official gazette today.

Repsol YPF SA took legal action this week against Argentina to pursue damages from the takeover of its controlling stake in YPF announced by President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner last month. Her government has refuted Repsol’s claims for $10.5 billion in compensation, saying it failed to spend enough on production and reserves at Argentina’s largest oil company.

Repsol said last month it invested more than $20 billion in the unit since 1999. The Spanish company this week notified Argentine officials of its intention to file a claim with the World Bank’s International Center for the Settlement of Investment Disputes in Washington, joining other companies and hedge funds seeking payouts from the nation.

YPF American Depositary Receipts slid 14 percent to $12.16 at 1:20 p.m. in New York. Repsol slid 1.3 percent to 13.44 euros in Madrid.

Argentine oil output declined to 35.3 million cubic meters in 2010, from 45.4 million in 2001, according to data published by the Argentina Oil and Gas Institute. YPF produces about 34 percent of the country’s crude.

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