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Energy Blast – September 15, 2010

Energy Minister Sergei Schmatko has expressed his belief that Russian oil production will reach a new post-Soviet high this year of more than 500 million tonnes.  The head of oil pipeline monopoly Transneft, Nikolai Tokarev, has rebuffed predictions that Russian oil output could slump with the exhaustion of the West Siberia fields, instead predicting an ongoing increase in production, facilitated by East Siberian plunder.  Reuters examines the obstacles mounting against Poland’s prospective nuclear project, which include a lack of financing opportunities, an absence of qualified workers and insufficient experience in the nuclear sector.  The BBC reports on the new agreement to be signed between Russia and Norway over how to carve up an oil-rich area, half the size of Germany, in the coveted Barents Sea.  The FT has an interesting analysis of the new UK Bribery Act, which makes oil companies responsible for failing to prevent corrupt acts of any employee round the world, and how it will effect their operations, given that the countries these companies operate in include states where graft is believed to be endemic.