Energy Blast – September 1, 2009

Shell has begun building a $100 million lubricant blending plant in Torzhok, which is the first to be constructed by an international firm in Russia.  After talks with Polish premier Donald Tusk in Gdansk, Vladimir Putin will meet with Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko to discuss natural gas among other matters.  The oil minister of Qatar has said that Russia has promised to support OPEC’s production cuts.  Petrobas shareholders are worried by the new plans Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula has for the company to explore new and extensive oil fields.  The corporation dropped in value by $7 billion in one day, as the President’s plans would allow the state to increase its stake in the company.  Turkmenistan is planning to create a naval base on the Caspian Sea, a move that could be seen as asserting influence over the region’s hydrocarbon resources.  RFE/RL reports that the Turkish press have endowed the country with the title, ‘world’s largest energy hub’, following a spate of recent deals.  Australia’s $42 billion Gorgon liquefied natural gas project, the country’s largest ever natural resources project, has moved one step closer to fruition.  PetroVietnam, and Russia’s Zarubezhneft Co. have signed an memorandum of understanding on oil and gas exploration in offshore Cuba.