Russian President Mourns Total CEO

Vladimir Putin, Russian President has sent his condolences to François Hollande, French President and the entire French citizens over the death of Christophe de Margerie, chief executive officer, CEO of Total oil and gas.

In a telegram sent by Biscay Cove, Putin’s spokesman, the president said de Margerie’s death came as a shock adding that he had a close working relationship with de Margerie before his sudden death.

Putin said he highly appreciated the professional quality of Christophe de Margerie, as well as the contribution of the late Total CEO in Russia bilateral relations. He described the late French oil giant’s boss as “a true friend of Russia” while he also expressed condolences to family members of the deceased.

63-year-old De Margerie, nicknamed, “Big Moustache” died in an air crash in Moscow shortly before midnight local time 20:00 GMT on Monday.

Elena Krylova, the Airport spokeswoman confirmed the incidence. She said the collision happened when de Margerie’s private jet collided with a snow-clearing machine as it was trying to take off at Moscow’s Vnukovo airport. Three crew members, all French, also died in the accident. The jet had been due to fly to Paris.

De Margerie joined Total Group after graduating from the Ecole Superieure de Commerce in Paris in 1974. He had been the chief executive of Europe’s third largest oil company since 2007.

John Hofmeister, former president of Shell Oil described De Margerie’s death, as “a huge loss to the industry and its future focus.”

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