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2014-06-22 15:55:00



Baltic leaders said on Saturday they would back further sanctions against Russia at a European Union summit next week unless there was a de-escalation in eastern Ukraine where Kiev is trying to quell a pro-Russian insurgency.

Hours after the start of a ceasefire on Friday, separatists attacked Ukrainian posts on the border with Russia and a military base, and tried to storm an airforce base, Ukrainain security forces said.

Earlier on Friday, the leaders of the United States, France and Germany agreed Russia risks new sanctions if it fails to take immediate steps to defuse tensions on the Ukraine border.

Leaders of EU's member states may discuss the issue at a summit in Brussels next week.

Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia - which all broke away from the Soviet Union in 1990-1991 - had already called for tougher EU sanctions against Moscow after its annexation of Crimea.

"If there will be no de-escalation of the situation then Latvia will support a third bloc of sanctions," Latvian Prime Minister Laimdota Straujuma told a news conference after meeting with her Baltic counterparts and European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso in the Estonian capital.

Lithuanian Prime Minister Algirdas Butkevicius said his position was the same, while their Estonian counterpart, Taavi Roivas, said that if there was no de-escalation in Ukraine, further sanctions would be the EU's only choice.

So far, the EU has imposed limited measures - asset freezes and travel bans on people and companies in Russia and Ukraine - and has mulled steps against Russia including restrictions ranging from luxury goods imports to an oil and gas ban. There has been no consensus on how to proceed.

States with close trade and energy ties with Russia, such as Italy, Greece and Germany, worry about the potential impact on their economies of stricter sanctions while others, such as Cyprus and Austria, have close financial links.

Concerns over Europe's gas supplies are a major consideration in the decision around sanctions as EU consumers get about a third of their gas needs from Russia, around half of it through pipelines that cross Ukraine.

Barroso at the news conference urged EU member states to reach a common stance on the issue of further sanctions.

"I am pleading for a common position of the member states," he said.




November, 20, 09:05:00


REUTERS - India’s natural gas consumption is expected to rise to 70 billion cubic metres (bcm) by 2022 and 100 bcm by 2030, according to a government think tank and the Oxford Institute of Energy Studies, up from 50 bcm now. India burns just 7 percent of what top user the United States consumes in a year with about a quarter of India’s population.

November, 20, 09:00:00


Norway, which relies on oil and gas for about a fifth of economic output, would be less vulnerable to declining crude prices without its fund investing in the industry, the central bank said Thursday. The divestment would mark the second major step in scrubbing the world’s biggest wealth fund of climate risk, after it sold most of its coal stocks.

November, 20, 08:55:00


WSJ - Light, sweet crude for December delivery rose $1.41, or 2.6%, to $56.55 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, snapping a three-session losing streak. Brent, the global benchmark, advanced $1.36, or 2.2%, to $62.72 a barrel.

November, 20, 08:50:00

U.S. RIGS UP 8 TO 915

U.S. Rig Count is up 327 rigs from last year's count of 588, with oil rigs up 267, gas rigs up 61, and miscellaneous rigs down 1 to 1. Canada Rig Count is up 24 rigs from last year's count of 184, with oil rigs up 9 and gas rigs up 15.

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