US/Russia: Major hurdle remains for Rosneft, Morgan Stanley deal

Russian oil conglomerate Rosneft has been given regulatory clearance to acquire Morgan Stanley’s oil trading operations, according to reports.

The US Federal Trade Commission granted clearance for the transaction, but the deal remains subject to approval by the US Committee on Foreign Investment.

But reports say approval by the committee will be no easy task. The body is made up of several critics of Russian’s foreign policy; additionally, reports say the review of the deal could be affected by the presence of Rosneft executive chairman Igor Sechin on the US list of sanctioned Russian officials as tensions continue between Russia and Ukraine.

According to analysts, the deal could be found to increase the influence of Rosneft, which would run against US policy. Reports say if the committee fails to made a decision on the matter, President Barack Obama will be given 15 days to rule on the matter.

The deal was first announced last December. Rosneft is the world’s largest oil production company.

Full content: RBTH

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