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March 29, 2022

Russian billionaire Igor Makarov’s Areti Energy cuts stake in Spartan Delta

Following the 9.8% stake sale, Areti Energy will have an 8.4% interest in the Canadian natural gas producer.

Understand the impact of the Ukraine conflict from a cross-sector perspective with the Global Data Executive Briefing: Ukraine Conflict


Areti Energy SPV, the privately held investment firm of Russian billionaire Igor Makarov, has divested more than half of its interest in Canada-based Spartan Delta for $121.5m, reported Reuters.

Makarov has divested 15 million shares, or 9.8% of the Canadian natural gas producer, for C$8.10 per share.

Following the divesture, Areti Energy will have a 8.4% stake in Spartan Delta.

This deal comes as Canada has imposed sanctions against some Russian firms and oligarchs.

Five Russian billionaires, including Roman Abramovich, were sanctioned by the Canadian Government earlier this month. It has stopped 32 Russian firms and government organisations from securing defence equipment or supplies.

In a statement, Areti said: “The purpose of the share sale is to generate immediate liquidity and reduce ARETI’s overall economic exposure to Spartan.”

Several firms have either restricted, paused, or even quit business activities in Russia following Western sanctions on Moscow over its military incursion on Ukraine.

State-backed Japan Petroleum Exploration (Japex) has based its business plan for the long term on a belief that it would retain its stake in the Sakhalin-1 oil and gas project in Russia, reported Reuters.

Japan’s Sakhalin Oil and Gas Development (SODECO) consortium holds a 30% interest in the Russian project from which Exxon Mobil earlier announced its plans to exit.

Japex owns a 15.285% stake in SODECO. Rosneft, the Russian oil company, is also a partner in the Sakhalin-1 project.

Speaking at a press conference, Japex president Masahiro Fujita said: “Our new business plan includes a contribution from the Sakhalin-1, though it does not account for a large share as output is expected to decline.”

Japex is not likely to make any new investment plans in Russia.

Seeking to benefit from the Russian oil being offered at discount, Indonesian state firm PT Pertamina is exploring the purchase of crude oil from Moscow for its upgraded refinery, reported Reuters.

At a parliamentary hearing, PT Pertamina CEO Nicke Widyawati said the company saw ‘an opportunity to buy from Russia at a good price’. Amid the current geopolitical situation in Eastern Europe, prices of oil and natural gas have risen drastically.

Widyawati said: “Politically, there’s no problem as long as the company we are dealing with was not sanctioned. We have also discussed the payment arrangement, which may go through India.”

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