MOSCOW (Reuters) - Spain's Repsol <REP.MC> has pulled out of a planned joint venture to develop two Arctic oil blocks with Russia's Gazprom Neft <SIBN.MM> and Royal Dutch Shell <RDSa.L>, a spokesman at Repsol said on Friday.
Gazprom Neft, the oil arm of Russian gas giant Gazprom <GAZP.MM>, Repsol and Shell signed a memorandum of understanding last June on establishing a joint venture to develop the Leskinsky and Pukhutsyayakhsky blocks on the Gydan Peninsula in northern Siberia.
A deal on the venture, in which Gazprom Neft would hold a 50% stake and Repsol and Shell each own 25%, was expected to close this year.
"Its an option we had on a well we are choosing not to exercise," Repsol's spokesman said.
A source at Gazprom Neft said the Russian company will continue to cooperate with Shell on the assets.
"Repsol has informed Gazprom Neft that at the moment, it does not consider a possibility of participation in the project," the source said.
Gazprom Neft declined to comment.
(Reporting by Vladimir Soldatkin and Isla Binnie; Editing by Susan Fenton)