Energy Blast – Dec 29, 2009

Much talk today on the Ukraine-Russia gas spats; RFE/RL reports that the Slovak government has warned that a gas row between Russia and Ukraine could endanger supplies to the EU.  Deputy Prime Minister Igor Sechin has affirmed however that Russia will continue exporting to Europe even if problems with Ukraine persist regarding changes in transit agreementsReuters has a factbox on the Druzha pipeline to central Europe.  Germany has given its permission for the construction of Russia’s Nord Stream gas pipeline in its exclusive economic zone.  Only approval from Finland now awaits.  Gazprom has come to an agreement with Serbia’s state-run gas company, Srbijagas, for 2010, and is looking to seal a deal on the Exxon-Mobil headed Sakhalin-1 project in 2010.  The company will increase its purchases of Uzbek natural gas next year.  Apparently Russia is also hoping to double its imports of Azeri gas, attempting to stake an interest in the energy-rich country which is also being courted by Europe for involvement in its Nabucco pipeline.