Equinor has become the first major Western oil producer to fully complete the exit from its operations in Russia culminating a decision that was approved by the company’s board on 28 February, just four days after Russian troops crossed into Ukraine.

The Norwegian company said it had transferred back to Rosneft its interests in four joint ventures with the Russian oil producer, and has been released from all future commitments and obligations.

Equinor said an agreement to exit the Kharyaga oil production sharing project in the north of Russia has also been signed. State-owned Russian oil producer Zarubezhneft that already has a 40% stake in Kharyaga, has taken over the Equinor's 30% stake in the development, according to a company's spokesperson.

French supermajor TotalEnergies has 20% and locally owned Nenets Oil holds 10% in Kharyaga.

Equinor said in its latest financial results report that the exit from Russian operations entailed an impairment of almost $1.1 billion.

The Norwegian company had earlier reported its share in oil production in Russian assets at about 25,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day, or just about 1.3% of Equinor’s total hydrocarbon output.

Production also came from Equinor’s 49% stake in Russian research institute Krasgeonats, headquartered in the city of Krasnoyarsk.

Krasgeonats holds exploration and development licences for 12 conventional oil and gas blocks in East Siberia, with one of the licences — North Danilovskoye — being in production since July 2020.

The Equinor spokesperson said the company will keep an office in Moscow to deal with remaining exit, accounting and legal issues.

The company has also committed to pay salary to its local employees who will lose their job, until the end of this year.

Earlier reports suggested that the company employed around 70 people, as most of operations has been handled by its partner Rosneft.

Besides Equinor and TotalEnergies, other Western companies that are working on their exit from Russia include ExxonMobil of the US and Europan majors BP and Shell.

Earlier this week, Russian privately held oil producer Lukoil said that it closed a deal to buy a Shell-operated chain of retail fuel stations in the country.

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