Rosneft could be forced to slash as much as a quarter of the workforce at its Moscow headquarters as the Russian state-owned oil giant feels the bite of Western sanctions, according to a report.
The proposed cutbacks, reported by Russian business daily Kommersant citing sources close to the company, could affect as many as 1000 staff with mainly administrative functions.
However, a spokeswoman for the company denied to news agency AFP that it was looking at massive staff cuts, while admitting Rosneft “is working to reduce its costs, including through manpower optimisation”.
The company, which is also said to be looking at possible output cuts this year, recently requested a $41 billion loan from the government to repay debt and reduce its dependence on Western financial institutions.
It follows a range of sanctions imposed by the US and European Union against Russia over its seizure of the Crimea peninsula from Ukraine and alleged backing for pro-Russian separatists in the east of the country.
Rosneft has been added to the list of Russian companies being denied access to finance from Western banks, while its president Igor Sechin has also been blacklisted due to his close ties to Russia’s President Vladimir Putin.
The latest sanctions, introduced by the EU on 31 July and backed by the US, are targeted at Russia’s oil, finance, defence and technology industries.
They include a ban on exports of technology for exploitation of hydrocarbons in deep-water, Arctic and shale plays.