UPDATE 2-Spain's Repsol writes off YPF loss as dispute nears end

viernes 21 de febrero de 2014 11:07 GYT

* Revalues YPF stake at $5 billion

* New valuation reflects imminent settlement with Argentina

* To take 1.28 billion euro writedown in 2013 results

By Tracy Rucinski and Andrés González

MADRID, Feb 21 (Reuters) - Spanish oil major Repsol will take a 1.3 billion euro ($1.8 billion) hit on its stake in energy firm YPF that was seized by Argentina, as a two-year battle for compensation draws to a close.

Repsol has revalued its majority stake in Argentina's largest energy company at $5 billion, to reflect the size of an imminent financial settlement that will end one of the rockiest chapters in the oil major's history.

The compensation package revealed by Reuters on Thursday is expected to be signed before a Repsol board meeting next Tuesday.

Ending the dispute over YPF, which Argentina nationalised in 2012, will allow Repsol to focus on expanding its international exploration and production operations to better compete with larger European rivals such as Eni and Total without a legal battle hanging over its head.

Repsol had been carrying the value of YPF on its books at 5.4 billion euros. It will make a 1.28 billion euro writedown in its 2013 results, it said in a regulatory filing on Friday, to reflect the difference between the book value and the size of the compensation.   Continuación...