$350 FOR $400 B
The price of gas in a long-awaited gas deal between China and Russia signed Wednesday is close to $350 a thousand cubic meters, Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak said Friday in an interview with Russian state TV channel Rossiya 24.
Mr. Novak said the $350 figure was "close to the contract" but cautioned that "the price is tied to the oil product basket, which is why it may be different each time."
Russia didn't disclose the gas price when it signed its $400-billion 30-year landmark agreement with China on Wednesday, with OAO Gazprom Chief Executive Alexei Miller saying at the time that the figure was a commercial secret.
Russian President Vladimir Putin said Friday that at the agreed price and volume, the investment required for the project would pay off.
Analysts have differed in their views on what the gas price might be in the deal but most agreed that the project would require major investment from Russia that could financially strain Gazprom. Others suggested that the benefit of entering the fast-growing Chinese market outweighs the financial impact on the company.
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BP and its partners in Azerbaijan's giant ACG oil production complex agreed Thursday to extend the production sharing contract by 25 years to 2049 and to increase the stake of state-owned SOCAR, reducing the size of their own shares.
The U.S. current-account deficit increased to $123.1 billion (preliminary) in the second quarter of 2017 from $113.5 billion (revised) in the first quarter of 2017, according to statistics released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA). The deficit increased to 2.6 percent of current-dollar gross domestic product (GDP) from 2.4 percent in the first quarter.
U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures CLc1 were trading up 41 cents, or 0.8 percent, at $50.30 by 0852 GMT, near the three-month high of $50.50 it reached last Thursday. Brent crude futures LCOc1, the benchmark for oil prices outside the United States, were at $55.91 a barrel, up 29 cents, and also not far from the near five-month high of $55.99 touched on Thursday.
“The principal risk regarding Russian and Chinese activities in Venezuela in the near term is that they will exploit the unfolding crisis, including the effect of US sanctions, to deepen their control over Venezuela’s resources, and their [financial] leverage over the country as an anti-US political and military partner,” observed R. Evan Ellis, a senior associate in the Center for Strategic and International Studies’ Americas Program.