Analysts on ChevronTexaco's proposal to buy YUKOS stocks

The Russian government will take all possible measures to avoid the selling of YUKOS shares to ChevronTexaco, Sergey Suverov, an analyst with the Russian commercial bank Zenit, said in an interview with RBC. Commenting on media reports regarding ChevronTexaco conducting negotiations over the purchase of a 25-percent stake in the Russian oil giant, Suverov said that the Kremlin might increase taxation of oil exports in order to prevent this deal.

ChevronTexaco is not the only company interested in buying YUKOS stocks. Among other contenders are ExxonMobil and TotalFinaElf. All these companies are aiming at a stake in the oil corporation to come up after YUKOS and Sibneft have completed the merger. If one of them succeeds, the foreign companies will be in check of nearly 50 percent of the Russian strategically vital oil sector, taking into account the fact that BP already owns a 50-percent stake in TNK, the analyst pointed out.

To counteract the Russian government's defensive policies, foreign companies will lobby for their interests through their governments.

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