|The strength of hope|
The Ukrainian oil products market endured a strong storm last autumn and winter as the financial crisis struck product suppliers, especially companies dependant on imported supplies. The volatility of the Ukrainian currency, Central bank's bans on making advance payments to suppliers from Kazakhstan, Belarus and Lithuania led to many operators facing losses on trading margins and sometimes to direct losses. Despite all this, the Poltava based trading company Nadezhda worked steadfastly on the oil product market while furthering its strategic development plans.
|PERSON OF THE ISSUE|
|The captain of hope|
Viktor Batrachenko, general director of Nadezhda
The development of Ukrainian business in recent years is a testimony to Adam Smith's words that the world only needs «peace and easy taxes» to develop its economy. Ukrainian reality and the experience of Nadezhda's development also shows that even the mistakes and sometimes blatantly awkward steps of governments are unable to stifle the initiatives of private citizens and their desire to develop their own businesses.
|PHOTO OF THE ISSUE|
|As the oil gets cheaper…|
An estimated 2,500 protesters gathered on 2 March near the Capitol's coal-fired power plant in a bid to attract the attention of lawmakers to the dangers of climate change.
|TOPIC OF THE ISSUE|
|IP Week conference highlights|
In what traditionally is a set of experts driven energy-related seminars and plenary sessions, this year's IP week four days of conference were no exception in a 95 years long tradition of IP conferences.
|TOPIC OF THE ISSUE|
|Russians light up at Leister Square|
«Have a smoke, mate?». This question, quite peculiar for people in the street in Russia and sometimes having an implication of a concealed threat from a stranger asking it, sounded in Russian like a compliment at London's Leister Square. Fellow countrymen easily recognize each other in a foreign country.
|TOPIC OF THE ISSUE|
|Sheer pleasure of friendly meetings|
OILMARKET magazine, as a permanent and dedicated «bander» during many other «Russian parties» all over the world is also the official edition that will cover the Russian Petroleum Party in February 2010. Please read the magazine and our website www.oilmarket-magazine.com to find about the place and the time of the next meeting.
|Facing the short-term and long term challenges|
This year's IP week events in London in February had seen hundreds and thousands of industry executives and decision makers. Traditionally, many of them arrived on 17 February for the IP lunch in Dorchester hotel to be greeted by the Energy Institute President, this year, president-elect James Smith, who cheerfully addressed the audience on thoughtfully selected set of priorities. As wise people do during a crisis, he tried to look into what's next after the current financial collapse and frustration it caused would be over.
|EXPLORATION AND PRODUCTION|
|Arctic seas — geological dangers and risks|
Piter Gaz solves problems encountered in building underwater gas pipelines
Developing Russia's continental shelf is one of the nation's priority programmes. The potential resources on the Russian shelf are estimated to be 100bn t of fuel equivalent or 100tr m3 of gas. Caught by the world financial crisis, many expensive projects have been stopped, including developing projects located in the harsh conditions of the arctic shelf. However, this certainly does not mean that scientific studies of the arctic should be frozen since only science and high-tech will enable breakthroughs in solving the problem of developing Russia's shelf in the future.
|Caught off guard|
An accident in Saratov Region threatens operations at four refineries
The incident occurred on the Russian segment of the Samara-Lisichansk pipeline which is managed by Russian and Ukrainian pipeline operators. As a result of the
accident, the damaged the oil artery was down for four days. This threatened four refineries and impeded export schedules for crude shipped through ports on the Black Sea.
|Is everything Ok?|
From 10 to 13 March, the International Exhibition Centre in Kyiv hosted the annual «Petrol stations complex. Interneftegaz. Autotechservis» exhibit organised by Avtoekspo. This event has always been considered one of the biggest events in Ukraine's trade sector, but this year the size of the exhibit was less than in previous years.
Russians will go all the way to CIF and beyond that!
Keeping oil products in storage is often invisible, but very important part of oil trading and shipments. Volatile markets, global financial and economic turmoil had their impact on the oil industry. OILMARKET met with Ulf Vleeshouwers, the head of one of Europe's leading oil storage companies Nordic Storage, to see how industry trends affect this large segment, and some of his answers proved to be quite unexpected.
|Black cash register The show at Naftogaz|
On the night of 3 March, the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) detained the chief of the Regional Energy Customs Office, Taras Shepitko, as part of a criminal case opened by the SBU on 2 March based on alleged misappropriations by Naftogaz officials of 6.3bn m3 of transit gas worth over 7.4bn hryvnyas ($875mn). The headline news on 3 March was the «takeover» of Naftogaz Ukrayiny, but later it became apparent that the «takeover» was an SBU operation to confiscate documents as part of an investigation of the criminal case.
Russia produced 10.87mn t of LHCG (liquid hydrocarbon gasses) in 2008. However, falling crude prices on world markets led to lower prices for gas and as the crisis developed, demand for energy resources dropped as well.
Russneft's debts approach the value of its assets
Russneft, which not long ago was the most dynamically developing oil company in Russia, is not experiencing its best of times. Bad luck continues to dog the company. First came tax claims against the company and then criminal cases against its managers, the forced sale of the company and self-imposed exile of the company's main owner and leader. Then came uncertainty with the new owners and constant changes in management, rising debt and falling revenue from crude exports and lower production.