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Vekselberg Says He Trusts Rosneft to Pay in TNK-BP Acquisition

Jan. 15 (Bloomberg) -- State-run OAO Rosneft, Russia’s biggest oil company, doesn’t need to sign a guarantee payment letter after agreeing to buy TNK-BP, Russian billionaire Viktor Vekselberg said.

“We signed an agreement, any guarantee letters are needless,” the Renova Group chairman told reporters in Moscow today. “We deal with such a respected company as Rosneft, and with its respected managers. We trust them.” Vekselberg agreed to sell Renova’s stake in TNK-BP to Rosneft as part of the third-biggest oil-company acquisition ever.

Rosneft agreed in October to buy TNK-BP, a 50-50 venture between BP Plc and AAR, a group of Russian billionaires, for $54.8 billion. The company, led by Chief Executive Officer Igor Sechin, will buy BP’s 50 percent stake in TNK-BP for $26.8 billion in cash and shares and has an initial agreement to acquire the billionaires’ half of the company for $28 billion in cash.

AAR is expected to invest the money in Russia, President Vladimir Putin said on Dec. 22. Vekselberg, Russia’s second-richest man, said he respected “the president’s wishes” and will invest in the country because of Renova’s understanding of “how the economy works here.”

The money will be invested in energy, technology transfer and machinery manufacturing, Vekselberg said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Stepan Kravchenko in Moscow at skravchenko@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Balazs Penz at bpenz@bloomberg.net

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