Energy Blast, Feb. 20, 2008

Ukraine’s Prime Minister, Yulia Tymoshenko, arrives in Moscow today to meet with Russia’s Prime Minister Victor Zubkov and to try and finally put an end to the countries’ gas disputes. Meawhile, Ukraine’s state energy firm Naftogaz said it had paid off a second tranche of nearly $178 million of payment arrears for gas imports, which Gazprom had put in total at $1.5 billion. Poland’s foreign minister says that the country will drop its veto on the start of talks on a new EU-Russia agreement if the 27-member bloc agrees to include energy security on its agenda with Moscow. Gazprom has signed an agreement to drill and produce Iranian oil and gas in a deal that “highlights Moscow’s deepening commercial ties with Tehran.”

German energy major E.ON has raised its stake in Russian power producer OGK-4 to an absolute majority of more than 75%.World EnergyPrivate equity firm First Reserve Corp. is to purchase a storage terminal from Venezuela’s state company PDVSA for $900 million.