MOSCOW -- Russia's largest private oil producer, Lukoil (IW 1000/23), said Monday it is selling its filling stations in three central European nations as part of an "optimization" plan that has already seen it pull out of Ukraine.
The decision came just weeks after the CEO of the ambitious firm -- which produces one-sixth of Russia's oil and more than 2% of the world total -- warned that increasingly tough Western economic sanctions would "have repercussions for all (Russian) companies."
Lukoil said in a brief statement that it is selling its network of 44 filling stations in the Czech Republic to Slovnaft, the Slovak subsidiary of Hungary's MOL Group (IW 1000/179).
It added that its 75 stations in Hungary and 19 in Slovakia would both be purchased by Hungary's Norm Benzinkut Kft.
The Kremlin denies backing pro-Russian insurgents in eastern Ukraine who have been waging a three-month war against Kiev's new pro-European leadership.
Lukoil says on its company website that it is the world's largest privately-owned oil and gas company when measured by petroleum reserves.
Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2014