Energy Blast – March 3rd, 2009

The Finance Ministry says Russia’s oil wealth funds are currently worth about $220 billion.  Gazprom’s gas output dropped 16% last month year on year, due to weakened demand caused by higher prices, and Poland’s PGNiG monopoly is struggling with similar setbacks, posting a net loss of $85 million in the fourth quarter.  Dmitry Medvedev and Spanish Prime Minister Jose Luis Zapatero will sign a joint energy cooperation agreement today in Madrid.  Russia has invited Iran to sell crude oil on the St. Petersburg Commodity Exchange.  The Caspian Pipeline Consortium, led by Chevron and which operates Russia’s only foreign-owned oil pipeline, has resumed activities after a leak last week.  The discrepancy in Rosneft’s reserve reporting yesterday – with some sources citing an increase, and some a decrease, is due to different methods of calculating reserves.