Energy Blast – July 6, 2011

The IEA forecasts that Russia’s oil and condensate production is set to peak at 10.57 million bpd next year and then start declining‘ – at least partly due to high taxes, which in Russia take 78% of oil profits and 56% of gas profits.  Rosneft, Transneft, Surgutneftegaz and TGK-2 are all complaining to the government about a new bill containing measures that would grant minor shareholders more rights to company information (‘All four companies are in conflicts with their minority shareholders‘, and Alexei Navalny is on the boards of Rosneft and Transneft).  South Korea has criticized the bidding process for Mongolia’s Tavan Tolgoi coal project, which favored three companies from China, Russia and the U.S., as ‘unclear and unfair‘.  The FT says that Mongolia’s choice should come as no surprise: ‘[s]andwiched between Russia and China, Mongolia has long sought to avoid alienating either of these great powers.‘  The World Trade Organization has ruled that China broke international law by curbing exports of raw materials; China insists that its policies are based on environmental and resource protection.  Negotiations between Gazprom and E.ON on the commercial terms of their supply contracts are expected to continue until the end of the year, and could be transferred to an international arbitration court if they do not reach a conclusion.  The German chair of the EU Committee on the Environment wants to restrict the expansion of shale gas exploration in Europe over concerns about damage caused by fracking; Poland, in its upcoming role as EU president, will obstruct any attempts to regulate shale gas development.  China is holding its first licensing round for shale gas production.