The re-eruption of the conflict between Ukraine and Russia over payments for gas deliveries illustrates that developments in Eurasian energy geo-economics do not take vacations, even over the New Year holidays. The Ukrainian-Russian dispute, for example, takes place in circumstances (economic, financial, political, military, even cultural) that are different from those surrounding their last tiff three years ago. Its significance and its dynamics differ accordingly.
Continue reading "Reality wins over energy grand design" »
The Indian stock market continues to slide following revelation of the scandal surrounding the outsourcing company Satyam Computer Services, of which the founding brothers have been interrogated and jailed and the chief financial officer arrested following the revelation of fraud that could exceed US$1.5 billion. Chairman Ramalinga Raju resigned in the middle of last week with a letter confessing the falsification of profit and revenue.
Continue reading "India's economy in junk mode" »
The crisis over Turkmenistan's gas, transmitted by Russia via Ukraine, demonstrates the need for other energy routes from the Caspian Sea region to Europe.
Continue reading "Turkmen gas almost in reach" »
Today, Thursday, the Chinese government released statistics showing that the country's economy grew at at an annualized rate of 6.8%, the slowest pace in seven years, during the last quarter of 2008. The performance follows a Fitch Ratings estimate at the end of last week that full-year 2009 growth would fall to 6% or below. The World Bank continues to insist on a 7.5% growth rate for the current year, based on the increasingly doubtful assumption of growing domestic demand. The International Monetary Fund has bruited a possible growth rate of 5%. Other estimates are being revised downwards, some even into negative territory.
Continue reading "Asia turns blind eye to facts" »
The Russian rouble has stabilized within 1% of 33 to the US dollar over the past 10 days, ever since the rumor started to circulate that the Russian Central Bank would cease its policy of effectively devaluing the currency step by step. That policy had seen the rouble decline by roughly 2% per day over the first eight trading days of the New Year.
Continue reading "Rouble teeters on slippery slope" »
As Russia and China seek to augment their influence over the development of Kazakhstan’s energy production, Astana looks for other routes to overcome the restraints. The reinvigoration since 2007 of prospects for a Trans-Caspian Gas Pipeline (TCGP) with Turkmenistan's participation creates the possibility for Kazakhstan, which already cooperates with Azerbaijan on trans-Caspian oil shipments, to participate also with gas exports. Delays in the development of the offshore Kashagan field make associated gas from the onshore Tengiz oilfield the first candidate for such exports.
Continue reading "Kazakhstan Looks at the Trans-Caspian for Tengiz Gas to Europe" »
Eastern Europe freezes as Brussels fiddles, while with Moscow's help Gazprom extends its grasp of energy production in the Caspian Sea region.
Continue reading "Russia deepens gas hegemony" »