Mnuchin statement rejects ExxonMobil bid for Russia sanctions waiver

The Trump administration will not be issuing waivers to ExxonMobil Corp. and other US companies authorizing oil and gas drilling currently prohibited by sanctions against Russia. US Treasury Sec. Steven T. Mnuchin’s Apr. 21 statement came following reports days earlier that the US multinational oil company sought permission to resume operations in the Black Sea with partner OAO Rosneft.

The Trump administration will not be issuing waivers to ExxonMobil Corp. and other US companies authorizing oil and gas drilling currently prohibited by sanctions against Russia. US Treasury Sec. Steven T. Mnuchin’s Apr. 21 statement came following reports days earlier that the US multinational oil company sought permission to resume operations in the Black Sea with partner OAO Rosneft.

Such waivers will not be forthcoming from Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control following a consultation with US President Donald J. Trump, the secretary said.

ExxonMobil immediately issued a statement acknowledging Mnuchin’s announcement. “Our 2015 application for a license under the provisions outlined in the US sanctions was made to enable our company to meet its contractual obligations under a joint venture agreement in Russia, where competitor companies are authorized to undertake such work under European sanctions,” it said.

ExxonMobil and Rosneft agreed in 2011 to undertake joint exploration and development of hydrocarbon resources in Russia, the US, and elsewhere as well as to share technology and expertise (OGJ Online, Aug. 30, 2011).

ExxonMobil began to wind down its participation in the agreement in 2014 after the US and the European Union imposed sanctions on Russia after it annexed Crimea from Ukraine earlier that year (OGJ Online, Sept. 19, 2014).

Contact Nick Snow at nicks@pennwell.com.

More in General Interest