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Gazprom cancels Nord Stream pipeline extensions

Nord Stream natural gas pipelineGazprom cancels Nord Stream pipeline extensions: For the second time in as many months, Gazprom has revised its plans to extend its European pipeline network and has cancelled the proposed construction of two new branches of the Nord Stream natural gas pipeline because of the “complicated” political situation. Nord Stream currently consists of two pipes with an annual capacity of 55bn m³ – enough to supply around 10% of the EU’s annual gas needs – and the construction of two more pipes (including one to the UK) would have doubled Nord Stream capacity. (more…) Read More»

Russia to switch off Ukrainian pipeline by 2020, warns Miller

Gazprom Chairman Alexei Miller

Gazprom’s Alexei Miller

Russia to switch off Ukrainian pipeline: Gazprom President Alexi Miller this week gave notice that Russia is planning to stop supplying gas to Europe via the Ukrainian pipeline by 2020, and said that Europe would have to build its own energy transport infrastructure now that plans for a South Stream line running through Bulgaria had collapsed. “The Turkish Stream is the only route that can be used to supply the 63bn m³ of gas that is now being supplied through Ukraine,” he told Kommersant, and warned that Europe should start building new pipelines “right now,” otherwise, the gas “wind up in other markets.” rbth  Read More»

Silk Road Economic Belt climbs up President Xi Jinping’s agenda

Silk Road Economic Belt: China’s President Xi Jinping today pledged to accelerate plans to resurrect the old Silk Road trading route and to create both a Silk Road Economic Belt and a Maritime Silk Road both of which he claimed would help strengthen ties between China, the rest of Asia and Europe. The founding of the Asian Investment Infrastructure Bank (announced at a meeting of 21 Asian countries in Beijing last month and due to start operating next year) was an important step towards the realisation of the goal, he said. Newskaz Read More»

Victor Kharitonin buys into Nürburgring German FI race track

Victor Kharitonin, the Russian billionaire, has bought a majority stake in the Nürburgring German Formula One race track after Capricorn automotive chief Robertino Wild was forced to pull out due to financial difficulties. Kharitonin is the co-owner of the Pharmstandard company and was recently calculated to be worth over $1bn by Forbes magazine. The Moscow Time   Read More»

RT launches UK channel and looks at German and French versions

RT, the state-run TV broadcast channel formerly known as Russia Today, has launched a London-based news channel. A spokesman said that RT UK would be focusing on”the issues that matter most to Britons.” The move follows RT’s expansion into Argentina earlier this month and the channel has also announced plans to create French- and German-language channels to add to its existing English, Spanish and Arabic ones. The Moscow Times
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Gunvor looks to sell Russian assets as it seeks to limit exposure

Gunvor, one of the world’s top five oil trading houses that was co-funded by Putin ally and sanctions-hit Gennady Timchenko, is looking to cut its exposure to Russia and to raise funds for acquisitions elsewhere in the world. The Swiss-based company is reported to be close to selling its stake in the Yakut coal company Colmar, and is also looking for buyers for some or all of its shares in the Ust-Luga coal and fertiliser terminal, as well as its 50% stake in the Novorossiysk terminal. Interfax    Read More»

Bouygues appointed to build Baku Metro tunnel

France’s Bouygues Travaux has been appointed to build a new tunnel at the 28 May station in the Baku Metro at the intersection of the subway system’s red and green lines. The project is due to be completed by 2016. Azernews     Read More»

Trans Adriatic Pipeline issues first onshore tender

The Trans Adriatic Pipeline consortium has company has issued the first major Invitation to Tender for the construction of the onshore section of the pipeline. The tender is for the engineering, procurement and construction of approximately 760km of the cross-country onshore pipeline which will run through Greece and Albania and which will ultimately link Azerbaijan’s Shah Deniz oilfield in the Caspian Sea to Western Europe. Trend Read More»

Gerry Weber to terminate Russian franchise agreements

Gerry Weber, the German clothing manufacturer Gerry Weber is considering terminating its Russian franchise agreements. It is is also planning to pull out of Ukraine and some countries in Southern Europe with poor credit ratings. Izvestia Read More»

BASF sells German gas storage facility to Gazprom

BASF has agreed to sell Europe’s largest underground gas storage facility to Gazprom. In return for the storage facilities which is located in the Lower Saxon town of Rehden, the German chemical company will participate in the development of a large gas field in Siberia. RIA Novosti   Read More»

RusVinyl to expand Kstovo petrochemical operations

RusVinyl: The petrochemical joint venture between Russia’s Sibur and Belgium’s Solvay is considering expanding the operations of the RusVinyl plant in the Nizhny Novgorod town of Kstovo. The new plant would be dedicated to the construction of PVC and the upgrade of Sibur’s ethylene production facilities. Interfax  Read More»

Mistral helicopter carrier contract suspended by Hollande

Mistral helicopter carrier contract suspended: French President Francois Holland has bowed to international pressures and suspended the supply of helicopter carriers to Russia because of the situation in Ukraine. The contract is worth in the region of €1.12bn. Vedomosti   Read More»

Rotterdam oil terminal to go ahead despite protests

Rotterdam oil terminal: The Russian Summa construction company is to go ahead and build a €750m oil terminal in Rotterdam, despite protests from several prominent Dutch politicians. The oil hub will have capacity of 3.1m3 tonnes and is due to be completed by 2016. ITAR-TASS
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European reliance on Russian gas to last ten years

European reliance on Russian gas: The international rating agency Fitch predicted this week that countries in Western Europe will remain dependent on Russia gas for at least another decade unless there either a significant decrease in demand or a major upswing in alternative sources of energy. It believes that the only viable alternative source of hydracarbons will come from the Shaz Deniz field in the Caspian Sea via the  Trans Anatolian Gas Pipeline (TANAP), which will not be operating at full capacity until 2026. TREND

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Snoozebox football village proposed for World Cup

Snoozebox football village: World Cup organisers in Saransk have signed a preliminary deal with Britain’s Snoozebox company to build a temporary “portable hotel” in the city for the duration of the 2018 tournament. The Snoozebox Football Village would be constructed by stacking container modules on top of each other to provide 2,000 2-4-star rooms as well as entertainment facilities, restaurants, shops and large TV screens. The Moscow Times

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Baku Metro equipment contract goes to Thalys

Baku Metro equipment contract: France’s Thalys has won the contract to supply Baku Metro control and signalling equipment.The contract includes both the purchase and installation of equipment and software at the bus terminal and on stations along the Memar Ajami-2 – or purple – line. Azernews
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Russian EU import ban may call for Swiss solution

Russian EU import ban: It is being reported that EU food exporters are considering smuggling milk meat and vegetables into Russia via Switzerland. As a non EU member state, Switzerland is exempt from Russia’s recent food embargo. RIA Novosti 

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VTB sets sights on Roberto Cavalli fashion house

Roberto Cavalli: The VTB Group’s investment arm VTB Capital is negotiating the acquisition of a controlling stake in Italian fashion house Roberto Cavalli. It is believed to be looking to buy a 60% stake in a deal worth around $1.1bn. Interfax   Read More»

Glencore in line to modernise Tajik Aluminium Company

Tajik Aluminium Company: Glencore, the world’s largest supplier of commodities and rare earth materials, is planning to help with the technological modernisation of the Tajik Aluminum Company (TALCO), it emerged after talks between Tajikistan’s President Emomali Rahmon and Glencore Chairman Andrew Kaplan in Dushanbe on Friday. Glencore and TALCO have been working together since 2007 and the Swiss-based company is now looking to expand its activities in Tajikistan. AKI Press

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Total increases Novatek stake despite sanctions

Total increases Novatek stake: France’s Total has increased its share in Novatek to 18.2% and is said to be committed to its publicly stated intention to eventually increase its stake to 19.4%. The two companies are jointly developing the Termokarstovoye condensate field in the Siberian Yamal-Nenets region. Interfax     Read More»