British oil major BP has rejected claims by minority shareholders who filed a suit against its Russian venture over a failed tie-up with Rosneft, BP Russia said on Wednesday.
Minority shareholders in TNK-BP Holding, a joint venture between BP and Alfa Access Renova (AAR) consortium, say their interests were harmed by BP's failure to finalize a $16-billion share swap and an Arctic shelf development deal with Russian major Rosneft, as TNK-BP could have participated in the project.
"One of the key arguments for the dismissal of the suit is the absence of any loss or damages whatsoever to the company. Thus, any speculation on the size and availability of a claim for damages is legally absurd," BP Russia said in a statement.
The Rosneft deal fell through after AAR, which represents four billionaires of Russian origin, said it broke TNK-BP's 2008 shareholder agreement under which the partners were obliged to offer all energy project proposals to TNK-BP first.
BP Russia also said that TNK-BP Holding could not become a party in the strategic partnership with Rosneft, because it was not considered as a possible member of the alliance "due to the lack of required competence", as had frequently been mentioned by Rosneft.