|TOPIC OF THE ISSUE|
|THE IRON FIST IN VELVET GLOVE|
The China's state-owned oil&gas giant CNPC has shown enviable determination and consistency, having bought all Kazakh assets of Canada-based PetroKazakhstan for $4.18bn.
|PERSON OF THE ISSUE|
GENERAL DIRECTOR OF KAZTRANSOIL
Today, Kaztransoil links the rapidly expanding in every direction Kazakh pipeline system with just as dynamic Russia's pipeline network. In short term, the company plans to launch a range of new projects, including pipeline artery to China. The volumes of crude shipments via Transneft systems are also growing — Kazakh-produced volumes rapidly gain ground at the Baltic market, cementing the links of nations and continents. We wish to Kairat Krymov and his colleagues every success and sustainable growth for the company with such sound mission.
|PHOTO OF THE ISSUE|
|Modern technologies of water cleaning|
Modern technologies of water cleaning enable oil refineries to keep neighboring ponds and rivers clean.
|EXPLORATION AND PRODUCTION|
|KURMANGAZY: GREAT EXPECTATIONS|
RUSSIA AND KAZAKHSTAN INKED AN AGREEMENT ON ONE OF THE LARGEST CASPIAN FIELDS
The agreement required brokerage skills of both Presidents — the PSA was inked in Astana during Putin's visit to Kazakhstan on 6 July. Russia's President said that Russia and Kazakhstan poised to invest in the project some $22-23bn — which is a double of the earlier estimates. The project would provide up to $31bn income to Kazakh state coffers. Still, Russia is not likely to remain a «poor relative», even though it had to give in somewhat to Kazakh demands.
Lukoil earmarked $500mn for Ukrainian projects
Having made impressive advances in its investment projects in Bulgaria and Romania, Russian oil giant Lukoil now ponders over further growth on Ukrainian direction. In the beginning of August the company halted its Odessa refinery operations for a $320mn modernisation project, expected to last till 2008. The modernisation would enable the refinery to produce motor fuel compliant with Euro-4 and Euro-5 regulations, in parallel increasing refining depth to 80%. Lukoil also plans to expand its network of filling stations — by project's deadline the company hopes to double its network to some 350 outlets. Lukoil earmarked some $500mn for pumping into Ukrainian projects over the next three years.
The reports about accidents on units of BP and other majors abroad is nothing new for the media sheets. This pressurises the representatives of TNK-BP, BP's joint venture, to watch their step in Russia, the country full to the rim with so-called experts vying to improve their personal financing by picking up environmental axes. Saratov refinery installed Dupont's work safety and environment protection management system.
|NOVATEK GOES PUBLIC|
Russia's independent gas producer placed 19% shares on IPO, getting $966mn
Russia's largest independent gas producer attracted keen interest to its IPO, becoming the first company in domestic gas production industry to gain substantial finance. Despite the risks intrinsic to Russia's natural gas market (too much in the industry depends on Gazprom's whims and its patronage of access to the gas pipe), demand for Novatek's shares by far outstripped the offer. The example caught up fast — Russia's oil producer Urals Energy presented its IPO on London Stock Exchange soon afterwards, next year Russia's state-owned firm Rosneft plans to follow the trend.
|THE KING IS DEAD…|
On 1 August died Fahd ibn Abdel Aziz Al Saud, the King of Saudi Arabia and one of the most influential and respected politicians of the Middle East. His successor, Prince Abdullah, has been at the head of the oil industry of Saudi Arabia since after 1995, when King Fahd suffered a series of strokes. Analysts believe that the new king will not bring radical changes into economic policy, and that Riyadh will stick to the same course in relations with the West.
|FAR AWAY FROM HOME|
INTERESTS OF GAZPROM AND LUKOIL MEET IN LATIN AMERICA
Both Russian companies apply for exploration and development of the Venezuelan gas project Rafael Urdaneta — Lukoil applied to enter the tender in April this year, while Gazprom has only declared its intention to submit documents. While the oil company says there is no need for any consortium, the gas monopoly, on the contrary, shows its willingness to cooperate within this project both with Russian and foreign companies.
|OCCIDENTAL IS BACK TO WORK IN LIBYA|
Occidental Petroleum Corp will be the first American oil&gas company since 1986 to renew the oil production in Libya. According to the company, teams of its technical experts have already examined the fields on which the exploration and production will be resumed. They said that the fields are in satisfactory condition, so the renewal of operations «will not take long».
|THE FIRE IN THE ARABIAN SEA|
At least 12 oil workers died and several more are missing after massive fire gutted Mumbai High North oil rig offshore Arabian Sea in 160km from Bombay on 27 July. The rig is owned by India's state-owned ONGC.
|MOSCOW MAYOR VS OIL TYCOON|
MAYOR OF MOSCOW STEPS INTO THE CONFLICT OF SIBNEFT AND SIBIR ENERGY
Moscow's Mayor Yuri Luzhkov in late July publicly accused the Governor of Chukotka region Roman Abramovich in thievery. The issue has nothing to do with politics — head of Moscow spoke as the CEO of Moscow Oil&Gas Company, talking to Abramovich as the businessman and key shareholder of Sibneft rather than the Governor of Chukotka. Luzhkov alleges that Abramovich actions damage the capital of Russia.
|GET IN QUEUE!|
A NUMBER OF CONTENDERS FOR MAZEIKIU NAFTA GROWS
Since last October, when the Lithuanian government refused to extend Yukos's option for the additional interest in Mazeikiu Nafta (MN), events in Mazeikiu have been developing at an extremely high pace. Lithuania has refused to buy out the controlling interest in MN and managed to hold negotiations with a lot of contenders willing to purchase Yukos's stake in the company. However, as surfaced later, the question is not only about 53.7% of MN owned by the Dutch subsidiary of Yukos — it also concerns a part of state's stake in Mazeikiu Nafta. As always, the Russian factor has brought some uncertainty to the matter.
|LUKOIL OVERSEAS GETS MONEY FOR SHAKH-DENIZ|
The European Bank of Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has given an $180mn credit to Lukoil Overseas. This money will go for the development of the Azerbaijan project Shakh-Deniz and the construction of the South Caucasus Pipeline Baku-Tbilisi-Erzerum. However, some analysts believe that Lukoil is going to sell its stake in the project.
|THE MEANING OF «BAD LUCK»|
BRITISH PETROLEUM UNITS ARE PLAGUED WITH ACCIDENTS
Industrial accidents became more frequent on the BP's facilities — for the major that prides its safety record, this is a double-trouble. The geography of accidents is as wide as the kind of damages is varied — the nature's intervention in human life, as always, takes diverse and unexpected forms.
The spiralling gasoline prices on Ukraine's fuelling stations throughout the summer seem to have caused feverish stir-up in the state corridors. Ukraine's ministry of economy hatched a project — if approved, the paper could bring about the stagnation even deeper than the memorable fuel crisis that paralysed Ukraine in April-May this year.