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    ConocoPhillips Has Upper Hand in Lukoil Bid

    Likely deal worth between $1.26 billion and $1.7 billion.

    NEW YORK -- After meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin, it appears as if ConocoPhillips Co. is beating out other players such as Exxon Mobil Corp. and ChevronTexaco Corp. in its bid to buy stake in Russian oil giant OAO Lukoil, according to Financial Newswire.

    ConocoPhillips looks as if it will purchase a 7.59 percent stake in Lukoil for between $1.26 billion and $1.7 billion.

    Earlier in the year, Conoco sold 795 service stations in New Jersey and Pennsylvania to Lukoil for $266 million. Lukoil has about 4,700 retail outlets, and 2,000 of them are in the United States.

    The oil picture in Russia has been in an uproar since Putin imprisoned YUKOS Oil Co. CEO Mikhail Khodorkovsky, and created turmoil over the safety of outside capital invested in Russian companies.

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