By Houston Business Journal

BP Plc and Rosneft, Russiaâ¿¿s state-controlled oil company, have reached agreement on a share swap that paves the way for joint exploration for oil and gas, according to news reports.

A Reuters report said the deal struck Friday raised U.S. concerns about Russiaâ¿¿s oil ambitions.

The London-based oil giant said it would exchange 5 percent of its shares, valued at $7.8 billion, for 9.5 percent of Rosneft.

Reuters reported that the deal, expected to be completed in a few weeks, signals an abrupt thawing in relations with Moscow both for BP and U.S.-born CEO Bob Dudley, who was installed as the companyâ¿¿s top executive in the wake of the Deepwater Horizon Gulf rig disaster.

Click here to read the Reuters report.

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