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LUKoil's 20% Repsol Purchase On Hold

The talks between Spanish builder Sacyr and Lukoil on a possible sale of Sacyr's 20 percent stake in Repsol to the Russian oil major are on hold

Sacyr, who has been looking for a buyer for its Repsol stake to ease its debt burden since September, refused to comment on the state of talks with Lukoil.

Another source told Reuters that Sacyr's creditor banks would not accept the guarantees that Lukoil had offered in exchange for taking on the $14.23 billion debt Sacyr used to buy the Repsol stake.

Savings bank La Caixa, Repsol's second-largest shareholder and Sacyr's partner in the talks with Lukoil, pulled out of the negotiations at the end of 2008 in a move which analysts said would reduce the Spanish builder's bargaining power considerably.

Analysts said that the recent stoppage of Russian gas supplies to Europe through Ukraine have also soured the prospects of a Russian oil company taking 20 percent of a Spanish one.

"The Lukoil issue is definitively shelved at the moment and expectations for a sale have cooled," an analyst said.

"Aside from the difficulties inherent in the deal, the political panorama is not conducive to a deal," he added.

Author: Ksenia Kochneva