Ukraine lists world’s largest offshore drilling company as international sponsor of war

10 April, 06:20 PM
The American company SLB plays a critical role for the aggressor state, occupying 8% of the Russian oil service market (

The American company SLB plays a critical role for the aggressor state, occupying 8% of the Russian oil service market (

The world’s largest offshore drilling company, Schlumberger Limited, aka SLB, has been listed as an international sponsor of war by the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine (NSDC), the National Agency for Prevention of Corruption (NACP) reported on April 7.

This designation was applied due to SLB’s expansion of its business with Russia, in contrast to the widely-shared divestment strategy of many international firms, explained Ahia Zahrebelska, the head of NACP’s minimizing sanctions-linked corruption risks division.

"SLB, like hundreds of other foreign businesses, still openly supports the Russian military machine,” she stated.

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“In parallel, the company declares that it does not violate any sanctions. If international companies still have this opportunity, more than a year after the start of the full-scale invasion, then it is our job to eliminate such loopholes in the sanctions regime.”

SLB makes up about 8% of Russia’s oil services market, snapping up market share as its foreign rivals left Russia. SLB has paid $5.4 billion in taxes to the Russian government, according to financial documents, and employs 11,500 in Russia in its fabrics division and service centers. Additionally, SLB makes use of a wide range of Russian-registered subsidiaries, allowing it to circumvent global sanctions, Zahrebelska noted, despite SLB’s public cooperation with Russian state-owned fossil fuel companies, including Gazprom, Rosneft, and Lukoil.

In addition, SLB’s reservoir research division in Russia and Central Asia grew by 25% in the third quarter of 2022, outperforming other regions. The company has supplied over 900 batches of its production to Russian clients since May, and continues to participate in tenders announced by Russian companies.

SLB has previously run afoul of U.S. sanctions in the 2000s by supplying drilling equipment to Iran and Sudan and was fined $1.4 million in 2014, after conducting services for a Gazprom project in the Arctic.

Around 9,000 of SLB’s Russian employees have been drafted into the Russian invasion force in Ukraine, and the company has banned remote work — allegedly to ensure that its staff cannot dodge military service.

Other multinational firms listed as international sponsors of war include Procter&Gamble, OpenWay Group, Danieli, TMS Tankers Ltd., Minerva Marine Inc., Thenamaris Ships Management, Delta Tankers Ltd., Dynacom Tankers Management Ltd., Leroy Merlin, ComNav Technology, Mondi Group/Mondi PLC, eKassir, Liberian International Ship & Corporate Registry, Bonduelle, Auchan Holding, Metro Cash & Carry, Buzzi Unicem, Yves Rocher and Raiffeisen Bank International.

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