SPAIN NEED RUSSIAN GAS
Spain has welcomed a new agreement to connect its energy network with those in Portugal and France as a major step toward breaking Europe's dependence on Russian gas supplies.
Spanish Energy Minister Jose Manuel Soria said Thursday the deal to double the electricity interconnection capacity between the three countries and kick-start a major gas project as "a very important political agreement."
He said the MIDCAT project linking gas infrastructure through Spain's northeast Catalonia region to southern France would help ensure that "Europe reduces its dependence on Russian gas."
The EU imports almost one third of the natural gas that it consumes from Russia. Much of that transits through conflict-torn Ukraine.
A gas price war between Moscow and Kiev was avoided this week, at least until the end of March. Previous price disputes have hit EU supplies.
Manuel Soria's comments came as European Union energy ministers gathered in Brussels to discuss boosting the percentage of energy production capacity that can be made available to EU partners to 10 percent by 2020.
Spain, Portugal and France sealed the agreement on boosting energy cooperation in Madrid on Wednesday.
Electricity interconnection between the two Iberian Peninsula neighbors and France, which relies on nuclear power for more than two thirds of its electricity needs, stands at around five percent.
The new electricity line through the Pyrenees Mountains was inaugurated last month. Once a special transformer is hooked up in 2017 it will significantly boost capacity. But new infrastructure will be required to reach the 10 percent EU target.
As the ministers met, the EU's executive Commission announced that it would make 100 million euros ($111 million) available for projects aimed at ending energy isolation and improving Europe's energy security.
"This funding is an investment opportunity to build a competitive, sustainable and secure energy market, and ultimately bring the benefits into our homes and businesses," said Miguel Arias Canete, the EU's commissioner on climate action and energy.
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LUKOIL - The plan is based on the conservative $50 per barrel oil price scenario. Sustainable hydrocarbon production growth is planned in the Upstream business segment along with the growth in the share of high-margin projects in the overall production. In the Downstream business segment, the focus is on the improvement of operating efficiency and selective investment projects targeted at the enhancement of product slate.
BP - BP will acquire on completion a 43% equity share in Lightsource for a total consideration of $200 million, paid over three years. The great majority of this investment will fund Lightsource’s worldwide growth pipeline. The company will be renamed Lightsource BP and BP will have two seats on the board of directors.
REUTERS - Brent crude was up 69 cents, or 1.1 percent, at $64.03 a barrel by 0743 GMT. It had settled down $1.35, or 2.1 percent, on Tuesday on a wave of profit-taking after news of a key North Sea pipeline shutdown helped send the global benchmark above $65 for the first time since mid-2015. U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude was up 45 cents, or 0.8 percent, at $57.59 a barrel.
ROSATOM - On December 10, 2017, the construction start ceremony took place at the Akkuyu NPP site under a limited construction licence issued by the Turkish Atomic Energy Agency (TAEK). Director General of the ROSATOM Alexey Likhachev, and First Deputy Minister of Energy and Mineral Resources of the Turkish Republic, Fatih Donmez, took part in the ceremony.