Russian oil-to-telecoms group Sistema has applied to the Federal Antimonopoly Service for permission to buy up to 49 percent in mid-sized oil company Russneft, a source close to Sistema said.
"The application has been submitted (for) up to 49 percent," the source said. A Sistema spokesperson confirmed the submission of the application.
Sistema signalled in December that it was interested in further expanding its oil empire by buying into Russneft but given Russneft's debts did not want to purchase more than 49 percent.
Last month Russneft's ownership reverted back to its founder Mikhail Gutseriyev after Russian tycoon Oleg Deripaska reversed a deal concluded in 2007 to acquire the firm.