On Tuesday night at Vnukovo airport, the plane crashed Falcon-50EX, carrying the president of one of the world's largest oil and gas company Total Christophe de Margerie, who was returning to Paris after a meeting of the Commission for Promotion of Foreign Investment in Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev. In the face of the deceased in a plane crash a top manager Moscow lost an important ally. His loyalty to Russian French media celebrated even obituaries. Christophe de Margerie actively promote investment in the country, publicly opposed sanctions. According to "Kommersant", this view is not shared by all in the Total, and now the company's attitude to business in Russia may become more restrained.
In Moscow, Mr. de Margerie has arrived at the 28th meeting of the Consultative Council on Foreign Investment, chaired by Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev. In addition to government officials attended by nearly 30 owners and managers of foreign companies. As they say sources, "Y", familiar with the meeting, the topic of oil and gas co-operation did not rise alone. But Christophe de Margerie spoke to be auto-mended speech against the sanctions, stressing that they complicate the work of European and American companies in the country. According to unofficial information, as a top manager was present at the meeting with the first government officials in a narrow range, in particular, discussed the situation with oil prices, and a partnership with LUKOIL, Total. On the creation of a joint venture between the two companies for the development of hard-to oil in the Bazhenov formation was announced in May, but due to the sanctions of the work has not begun, and Total in September, announced the freezing of the project.
However, at a meeting of Christophe de Margerie assured that Total "is committed to work in Russia." "We want to continue to invest in your country, and we are still ready to bring the best that we have," - he explained. According to a top manager, the limitations of doing business with Russia, "they do not hold, and non-productive" and their Total adheres only because "complies with the requirements of the law."
Mr. de Margerie conceded that attempts to lobby for their point of view on the political level: "We need to restore a stable and peaceful economic space consisting ofTVO between Russia and other countries. And I note that I give the same advice to their government in the firm conviction that the full consent of both parties should contribute. "Because of its position on sanctions, said Christophe de Margerie, he" was not very popular "in France . But in Russia it is valued: his condolences yesterday and brought public officials since Vladimir Putin and Dmitry Medvedev, and businessmen, including the head of "Gazprom" Alexey Miller, the president of Lukoil Vagit Alekperov and co-owner Gennady Timchenko Novatek.
But in France, the death of Mr de Margerie was the main topic for the media, and the political and business elite. Traditionally rival right and left, from Sarkozy to François Hollande, were unanimous: in the person of Christophe de Margerie, they lost not only a talented top manager, but also a friend. Media talked about the top manager is very warm, remembering the nickname Big Vc. Christophe de Margerie, they write, is not afraid to work, loved France, greeted with subordinates, he was an excellent negotiator and subtle diplomat, humorist, loveselem cigar and a good whiskey, talk "to you" with everyone except his mother. At the same time any political overtones in discussing the death of a top manager, even against the backdrop of the current political tensions between Russia and the West, in fact, did not arise. Most French media just reported "aviakrushenii" for which "launched dual investigations in France and Russia," some of the same and does not mention that it happened in Moscow. But many people said about the overall loyalty to Mr. de Margerie Russia.
Christophe de Margerie was an example of classic European top manager who has worked in Total lifetime, came to the company in 1974. In 1995, he led its Middle East unit in 1999 - exploration and production division, in 2000 he became Senior Vice President, and in 2007 - Chairman of the Board. Colleagues and friends of Mr. de Margerie called it a unique manager. "He was a very non-standard, open, loving to joke This sets it apart from the Anglo-Saxon closed and boring top managers This is what took de Margerie -.. Good joke moMr. win negotiations ", -. says friend Christophe de Margerie His business partner, adds that a top manager was" a true businessman, "always ready to take risks.
Another friend Christophe de Margerie This explains the development of Total in Russia. French company in 1995, became the operator of Kharyaga development (developed within the framework of the production sharing agreement), received 50%. Another 40% were in the Norwegian Statoil, and 10% - in the Nenets Oil Company. In this configuration, the project lasted until 2009, when the aliens gave way under the option on 10% of the state "Zarubezhneft". Sources "Kommersant" attributed this increased role of the state (in 2007 and changed the composition of the shareholders of another PSA project - "Sakhalin-2"). But foreigners managed to negotiate the sale of the shares for $ 65 million, while "Zarubezhneft" was willing to pay only $ 18 million, "Difficulties in negotiations with Margerie was not, it was he who led them, understood all the signals but also their conditions could protect", -. Says source "Kommersant", close to the project. Total tried to fight for larger assets. In 2003The Company has the option contract to Anglo Siberian Oil Company, which owned the licenses for the Vankor and North Vankor field. But they won the fight for the state "Rosneft", which, according to unofficial information, Gennady Timchenko helped structure.
After Christophe de Margerie headed Total, she became actively interested in not only oil, but also gas fields in Russia. The largest project Total could be to develop together with "Gazprom" of the Shtokman field in the Barents Sea - Mr Margerie signed a framework agreement on the project four months after his appointment as head of the Total. The company was supposed to be the main partner of "Gazprom", including in terms of technical solutions, but it is here that any major problems. "Gazprom" and Total number of years could not agree on the field development scheme, and the crisis of 2008 and the shale revolution in the United States have put into question the commercial viability of the project.
At this point, Total has decided to make a surprise, but forward-looking rate by another Russian producergas. In mid-2009, the company became a partner of Novatek to develop Termokarstovoye field, while the start of negotiations on a much more ambitious project - LNG production on the Yamal Peninsula. In spring 2011, Total and Novatek in the presence of Vladimir Putin agreed on a strategic partnership. Total received 20% of the project "Yamal LNG", and 12% of the shares of NOVATEK, with an option to increase its stake (currently 18.2%).
Yesterday, Gennady Timchenko, the main shareholder of Novatek, promised that all joint projects, started with Christophe de Margerie, will be continued. "And all that we can do here, we will communicate with his name", - he assured the businessman, which, sources say "Y", with the head of Total bound friendship. "Christophe saw the huge potential of the Russian-French projects - said Vagit Alekperov.- LUKOIL and Total have long-standing business relationship in the past difficult months of Christophe remained a model of nobility, always upholding the principles of fair partnership with Russia He was a friend of our company, our country.". .
Actually, however, the business perspectivesTotal in Russia can be called into question because of the position of the company. "In recent years, Christophe de Margerie remained almost the only one in Total, who played for the development of business in Russia", - says the source "b" close to Total. French Le Monde yesterday as potential successors to Mr Margerie as CEO named director Philippe Boisseau marketing department and head of the department of oil refining and petrochemical Patrick Puyyanne. The Financial Times adds to the list of directories on the exploration and production of Arno Brilyaka and head of Total Upstream Yves-Louis Darricarrere. Their attitude towards Russia is not known, but the latter is a top manager is part of Novatek's board of directors and, according to unofficial data, may be acting Head of Total.
"Christophe de Margerie could not hide his closeness to Putin."
Foreign media about the death of the president of Total at the Vnukovo airport.
On the night of October 21 in Vnukovo airport, the plane crashed Falcon-50EX, carrying the president of one of the world's largest oil and gas company Total Christophe de Margerie, who was returning to Paris onles committee meeting Foreign Investment Promotion in the Prime Minister of Russia Dmitry Medvedev. In the face of the deceased in a plane crash a top manager Moscow lost an important ally. As to the death of Mr. de Margerie responded world's leading media - in the "Y" collection.
Le Figaro (Paris, France)
In general director of Total Christophe de Margerie had special ties with Russia. It was clear that another country. During the escalation of tensions between Moscow and Europe and the rise of anti-Russian sentiment against the backdrop of Russia's actions in Ukraine, he always took the side of Moscow. A few hours before his death in an interview with the Prime Minister of Russia Dmitry Medvedev, he spoke out against "unfair and counterproductive" Western sanctions against Russia. He wanted to or not, Christophe de Margerie was considered one of the best Western supporters of the Russian government, which wanted to end the diplomatic isolation of Russia.
Liberation (Paris, France)
The extent to which the whole world was shocked on Monday morning, the news of the GibeIs the head of Total Christophe de Margerie as a result of collision of the aircraft with its Falcon snowblower at Vnukovo airport, once again stresses that this man was not just a great businessman. He was also a powerful head of state, and at the same time remained an incredible man. It is thanks to this feature of his death, the circumstances that could well form the basis of a spy novel, becomes the main news for the political and economic life of the country, all over Europe and the whole world. "Atypical" - so often speak of him. De facto, it is like someone or not, he was a man who did not look like anyone else.
Christophe de Margerie was an incredible list of contacts, which it if necessary, easily shared with the representatives of the French Foreign Ministry. He could be a friend to many of those who are not very welcomed in the world, but always remained priority Total company interest for him. He made no secret of its proximity to Vladimir Putin, with whom spent long conversations every time they met. Of course, Total has always had its interests and set of neftyanyh projects in Russia. But there was something more. "Imagine Russia without Putin. The same will be chaos, "- he said every time he was asked about this friendship, which causes distrust.
Manager Magazin (Hamburg, Germany)
He could deal with champagne, but a descendant of the famous dynasty Tettanzhe decided to dedicate his life to oil. On the way to the post of the head of the company and has as its leader de Margerie not only acquired friends, but had made many enemies. List of Total-partner countries looks like a directory (authoritarian) regimes: Iran, Iraq, Russia, Libya, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Nigeria, Myanmar under the previous government. Justice is also interested in him: Total was accused of violating the UN embargo against Iraq in 2002, when de Margerie spent 48 hours in custody. Later Total accused of cooperation with Iran.
The Independent (London, UK)
Loss de Margerie will clearly be felt by industry, because he fearlessly defended dealing with dictators and oppressive regimes largest oil business and the reputation of the business. His ekstsentrichnye mustache and a fundamental unwillingness to be led by political correctness, were his main features. For example, when in 2010 he was asked whether oil companies are right when dealing with certain political figures, he said, "Damn right."
In Iraq, Iran, Angola, Burma, Nigeria and Sudan, de Margerie was unchanged from its fountain pen, signing her on oil production contracts. He considered it his patriotic duty to France, because she herself did not have enough of its own oil and gas.
It is not surprising that Margerie met his end in Russia, where he is known, in spite of the Ukrainian crisis, made a deal with Vladimir Putin.