"Today, commercial success is driven by efficient international cooperation," Vladimir Putin told Rosneft CEO Igor Sechin and Glenn Waller, ExxonMobil's lead manager in Russia, on a video conference call from his Black Sea residence in Sochi.
"Businesses, including Russian and foreign companies, perfectly realise that and despite certain current political difficulties, pragmatism and common sense prevail, and we are pleased to hear that," he said.
Exxon brought a rig from Norway to drill Russia's first well in the Kara Sea and its move will be seen as a vote of confidence in Rosneft, run by a close ally of Putin's, Igor Sechin, who has also had sanctions imposed on him by Washington.
Read MoreNo grounds for US sanctions: Rosneft chief Sechin
"We of course welcome this approach (to cooperate) and are from our side are open to expand our cooperation," Putin said.
"I am convinced that the joint projects between Rosneft, Exxon Mobil and other companies will benefit our national economies, will contribute to strengthening the global energy situation," he said.
Waller, who spoke Russian, said the company was keen to keep working in Russia.
"Our cooperation is a long-term one," he said. "We see big benefits here and are ready to work here with your agreement."