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Ukraine designates Irish-American oilfield service company as international 'sponsor of war'

by Elsa Court and The Kyiv Independent news desk February 15, 2024 8:13 PM 2 min read
Weatherford International signage at the company's booth during the Hart Energy DUG Eagle Ford Shale conference in San Antonio, Texas, U.S. on Sept. 18, 2013. (Eddie Seal/Bloomberg via Getty Images)
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The Irish-American oilfield service company Weatherford International has been added to Ukraine's list of "international sponsors of war" for continuing operations in Russia, the National Agency on Corruption Prevention (NACP) announced on Feb. 15.

The international sponsor of war list is designed to be "a powerful reputational tool" to encourage the exit of international business from Russia and reduce Moscow's financial ability to continue its war against Ukraine, the NACP explains on its website.

Weatherford supplies equipment and services used in oil and gas drilling and production, and operates in more than 70 countries, including Russia.

The company, which is headquartered in Texas, has created more than 2,500 jobs in Russia, according to the NACP.

Weatherford released a statement in March 2022, in which it said the company would place new shipments on hold, suspend new investments, and not deploy new technology in Russia.

"We have no active joint ventures or partnerships in Russia," the company said.

Weatherford continues to operate in Russia through Weatherford Holdings (Rus) LLC, Weatherford LLC, and Weatherford Business Service LLC, the NACP said.

Reuters: Ukraine refuses to remove Austrian Raiffeisen bank from ‘sponsors of war’ list
Ukraine’s National Agency on Corruption Prevention (NACP) has refused to remove Austria’s Raiffeisen Bank from the international sponsors of war list, citing the bank still not having a clear plan to leave the Russian market, Reuters reported on Feb. 15.

The companies paid more than $15 million in taxes to Russia's budget in 2022, according to the NACP.

The NACP said that Russian state-owned oil giant Rosneft is one of Weatherford's partners in Russia and "remains the main customer for its services."

Despite international sanctions on Russia, Weatherford "successfully rebuilt its equipment supply channels" by replacing Western suppliers with supplies from Russian or other foreign companies, the NACP said.  

From Feb. 24, 2022, to Dec. 31, 2023, Weatherford imported equipment and spare parts for the oil and gas industry to Russia for almost $1.5 million, according to the NACP.  

"Weatherford has a clear intention to continue to fulfill existing contracts and sign new contracts with customers in Russia."

Ukraine’s effort to isolate Russia’s economy through ‘International Sponsors of War’ list
Editor’s Note: This story was sponsored by the Ukrainian think-tank Center for Democracy and Rule of Law (CEDEM). What do a Snickers bar, an Oreo cookie, and Haagen-Dazs ice cream have in common? Apart from being beloved sweet treats, these products are manufactured by companies that were named “i…
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