In April 2014, LUKoil announced the signing of a sale and purchase contract, under which it intended to sell its 50-percent stake in Caspian Investment Resources, Ltd. to its Chinese partner Sinopec.
"Sinopec has refused to finalize the deal, which is considered as a breach of contract by LUKoil. Today, LUKoil started arbitration proceedings against Sinopec regarding the significant damage inflicted," the Russian company said in a statement.
Caspian Investment Resources Ltd holds stakes in four hydrocarbon-production projects in Kazakhstan. As a result of the deal Sinopec would have held the entire 100 percent in the company.
Sinopec purchased the other 50-percent stake in Caspian Investment Resources from Indian billionaire Lakhshmi Mittal in 2010. It was expected that after selling its share, LUKoil would continue to participate in Kazakhstan hydrocarbon-production projects, including Kumkol, Karachaganak and Tengiz projects.