Russia has criticised the European Union’s offer to broker talks between Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan regarding the creation of a natural gas pipeline to take Turkmen fuel to Europe, with a Foreign Ministry spokesperson effectively saying that it was not the EU’s place to get involved, and calling for the EU to ‘refrain from action’. The European Council will ban any investment into Syria’s oil sector. BP has managed to halt the court ruling that initiated raids on its Moscow offices, although TNK-BP lawyers insist that they can still seek the documents needed. Ukraine’s gas imports – including those from Russia – have increased by 73% this year. Bolivia’s state-run YPFB and Brazil’s Petrobras have signed a supply contract. Chevron has shut down its offshore Louisiana Main Pass pipeline network in the Gulf of Mexico due to a leak of crude oil from a shallow water pipeline. It has been reported that Japan is aiming to start importing LNG from the US from 2015, in a bid to secure a steady supply.