8 Sep 2009 13:34

Tatneft ready to cooperate with Shell for geological exploration in Russia

MOSCOW. Sept 8 (Interfax) - Tatneft is ready to cooperate with Shell in conducting exploration work in and outside Tatarstan, Tatar Prime Minister Rustam Minnikhanov told journalists in Moscow on Tuesday.

"We are ready to cooperate with Shell," said Minnikhanov, who is also chairman of the board of Tatneft.

Tatneft's potential partners are "complicated guys."

"When a partner tells us he's the older brother, we don't always agree," Minnikhanov said.

The leadership of Tatarstan and Tatneft had previously negotiated with Shell on developing fields with highly viscous oil in Tatarstan. However, Tatneft ultimately decided against setting up a joint venture with Shell.

It had been reported that Tatneft and Shell might set up another joint venture to conduct exploration work in western Tatarstan and elsewhere in Russia, in particular Kalmykia.