Energy Blast – Sept 6, 2010

Following Friday’s news that President Dmitry Medvedev had proposed to replace Rosneft leader Sergei Bogdanchikov with Eduard Khudainatov, the papers today are reporting on the background of the company’s new ‘dark horse‘ president.  Bloomberg says that the new appointment increases the power of Deputy Prime Minister Igor Sechin in the company.  Gazprom will double its imports of gas from Azerbaijan as of next year: ‘It is much more expensive for Russia to buy gas from Azerbaijan than to produce it domestically, but the more it buys from Azerbaijan, the less others can buy,‘ says an Alfa Bank analyst.  Anti-nuclear activists led by the Green Party protested as Germany’s ministers met to discuss plans to extend the life of the country’s nuclear power plants over the weekend.  Romania’s Petrom has sold its Russian exploration assets in order to concentrate on operations in Romania and Kazakhstan.  Ukraine’s prime minister says the country is willing to bargain in order to reduce the ‘unfair‘ price it currently pays for Russian gas.  The president of state-owned Transneft is not so keen on the idea of privatization.  Selling a 25% stake on the open market ‘would be the worst thing that could happen to the company,‘ he said.