‘The project is rich in geopolitical significance, not least because Russia is quick to use its huge energy reserves as a political tool’: the Times reports on Nabucco. United States special energy envoy Richard Morningstar has said that Russia is ‘certainly free to participate’ in supplying gas to the pipeline and that it must be accepted as a partner. The project has had a boost as Turkey has abandoned its demand to buy 15% of gas from it and Turkmenistan has announced that it is ready to sell gas to it. Viktor Vekselberg’s Integrated Energy Systems may face state criticism for delaying deadlines without official sanction. Kazakhstan has finished construction of its part of the pan-Central Asian pipeline that will help China tackle its increasing energy requirements. Reuters reports on troubles ahead for Gazprom’s Shtokman gas project due to investment levels based on higher oil prices. The International Energy Agency has cautiously predicted that global oil demand will recover next year. The Financial Times reports that oil companies from emerging economies are responsible for more than 50% of the field’s biggest mergers.