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Exxon to Start Exploration Well in Russian Arctic Sea Tomorrow

Aug. 8 (Bloomberg) -- Exxon Mobil Corp. and its Russian partner OAO Rosneft will start exploration drilling in Russia’s Kara Sea tomorrow, undeterred by souring relations between the U.S. and Russia.

Russian President Vladimir Putin will give the command to begin drilling at the Universitetskaya structure tomorrow, the Kremlin said in an e-mailed statement today. Irving, Texas-based Exxon and Rosneft will drill using the West Alpha rig and work will continue through October, according to the statement.

Relations between Russia and the U.S. have reached their lowest point since the Cold War after Russia annexed the Crimea and the downing of a passenger plane over war-torn Eastern Ukraine.

BP Plc is the largest shareholder in Rosneft after the Russian state with an almost 20 percent stake in the company.

To contact the reporter on this story: Stephen Bierman in Moscow at sbierman1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Will Kennedy at wkennedy3@bloomberg.net

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