BP has withdrawn 60 remaining technical specialists, formerly assigned to TNK-BP, from Russia. All 148 technical experts, who have been instrumental in making TNK-BP one of Russia's best performing companies, have now been withdrawn to be redeployed in BP's businesses globally.
Lamar Mckay, BP's Executive Vice President said, "We are taking this action reluctantly. These technical experts have played a huge part in making TNK-BP one of Russia's most successful oil companies in the past few years.
"Since it was formed in August 2003 the company's oil output has grown by an annual average of 5.8 per cent. It has also paid some $70 billion in taxes and duties as well as $20 billion in dividends to its shareholders," Mckay added.
The decision to redeploy the staff is a business decision - there is a global shortage of skilled people in the industry and BP has numerous other ventures, for example, in Azerbaijan, the Middle East and the Gulf of Mexico, where their skills are needed and valued. The staff have been unable to provide their services to TNK-BP since work visa complications prevented them from doing so in March. Once this problem had been dealt with they were prevented from returning to their duties by security staff in TNK-BP and subsequently by a court injunction.
Even though the Omsk court recently lifted an injunction brought by a company called Tetlis, the litigation in the Tyumen court continues and has made little progress with no indication that this or other attempts to interfere with BP's ability to deliver technical support will be resolved in the immediate future.
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