Wintershall Focuses on Russia as Core Region, Restructures Board

Russia has become an increasingly important region for Wintershall Holding AG, partly due to the successful start of natural gas production by ZAO Achimgaz, a joint venture of OAO Gazprom and Wintershall Holding AG, in the Urengoy reserve in Siberia, and partly due to rising production in the Yuzhno Russkoye gas field.

Consequently, the wholly owned BASF company based in Kassel will strengthen its Russian operations in the future and reflect the growing strategic importance of its Russian activities in the structure of its Board of Executive Directors.

From October 1, 2008, all Wintershall's Russian activities will be aligned to "E&P Production" under Dr. Ties Tiessen. Moreover, the seat of the expanded Board Department will be moved from Kassel to Moscow. The head of "E&P Exploration and Development" so far, Bernhard Schmidt, is leaving the Company at his own request. The Chairman of the Board of Executive Directors of Wintershall Holding AG, Reinier Zwitserloot, will take on the interim responsibility for "E&P Exploration and Development."

Zwitserloot said, "We would like to thank Schmidt for all his work over the years. I am confident that with the new weighting of the focal point we have laid the foundations for the next successful chapter of Wintershall's activities on the Russian market."

 Zwitserloot also announced that Wintershall was entering the main phase of production at Achimgaz and was also evaluating new E&P business opportunities in Russia, saying, "For this we will continue to focus on our long-standing and reliable partnership with OAO Gazprom."


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