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Energy Blast – May 17, 2010

According to Bloomberg, Iran has signed an agreement with Brazil and Turkey for a nuclear swap deal that is designed to quell international suspicions about the nature of Tehran’s nuclear ambitions.  The US had apparently expressed some doubts about the efficiency of Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva’s attempts to negotiate in Iran prior to the visit.  Russia and Ukraine are apparently not going to discuss a Gazprom/Naftogaz Ukrainy merger during Medvedev’s visit, although the Russian President has suggested that this kind of alliance is possible, and could even be necessary’.  Reuters explains why convincing Ukraine of this might be an uphill struggle.  TNK-BP apparently plans to invest $800 million in its Ukrainian assets over the next five years.  Could a gas deal between Turkey and Azerbaijan mean the West cutting its dependence on Russia?  The Kremlin’s new envoy to the Caucasus, Alexander Khloponin, says that he will accomodate companies such as Lukoil in their search for tax breaks in exploring the Caspian Sea area.