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Energy Blast – May 11, 2009

The EU and Turkey have come to an agreement on the Nabucco pipeline, which should give Europe a significant lift in its attempts to diversify gas supplies away from Russia.  ‘This is a complete breakthrough’, a senior EU official has commented.  The agreement was signed by Azerbaijan, Georgia, Turkey and Egypt, whilst representatives of Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan refused to agree to the deal, reportedly due to pressure from Russia.  For the lowdown on the major energy pipelines, Reuters has a factbox.  Centrica has come to a ‘cut-price’ £2.3bn deal with EDF for a 20% stake in the British nuclear energy producer British Energy.  Italy’s Eni Spa and StatoilHydro have won approval from the Norwegian government to develop the country’s first oil exploration site in the Arctic.  The Chinese Ambassador to Russia has said that the pipeline between the two countries will help improve growth in bilateral trade and foster further cooperation.  South Korea is planning to start an $800 million fund to invest in overseas energy supplies, in a move to improve the country’s self-sufficiency.