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Energy Blast – April 6, 2009

Coal manufacturer Belon is ‘not getting hysterical over short-term debt’ and can repay loans if coal retains its current prices, says the Moscow Times.  Gazprom’s debt rating has been cut to Baa1 as oil and gas prices stabilize.  A subsidiary of coking coal producer Mechel has bought out all its preferred shares, possibly in order to acquire US company Bluestone Coal. Were the US embargo on Cuba to end, the country would be open to developing its incipient oil industry with the help of American companies, says Bloomberg.  Storing oil at sea has been made attractive again as shipping rates fall; Vitol Group, Royal Dutch Shell Plc and Gunvor International BV have all booked supertankers.  South Korea will not be developing oil interests in Iraq as their National Oil Corporation failed to qualify in the bidding process; some suggest it is a result of their presence in the Kurdish region.  Russia and China must seek new energy deals, President Hu Jintao reportedly comments.  It is apparently unlikely that Alaska will manage to secure the $1 billion worth of damages it seeks in its lawsuit against BP.