Russia to discuss with Libya fate of its oil deals

Reuters , Saturday 3 Sep 2011

In an endeavor to secure a place in post-Gaddafi Libya, Russia invites Libya's interim government to Moscow to discuss the future of its oil deals

Russia has invited members of Libya's interim government to Moscow to discuss the future of Russian energy contracts in the country stricken by six-months of civil war, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Saturday.

"We will discuss all of this," Lavrov told reporters after being asked about the fate of Russian oil contracts agreed with Libya's deposed leader Muammar Gaddafi. "They [Libya's interim government] offered to hold contacts, and we have invited their respective representatives to Moscow, at their request."

"We will discuss all this with them."

Russia's top oil and gas producers Gazprom Neft and Tatneft had invested hundreds of millions of dollars in exploration in Libya before suspending operations when an uprising broke out earlier this year against Gaddafi's rule.

Aram Shegunts, director general of the Russia-Libya Business Council, told Reuters in August that Russian energy firms are likely to be barred from resuming work in Libya after NATO-backed rebels ousted Gaddaffi who has been in power since 1969.

Russia recognised Libya's ruling interim council this month.

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