Russia Ignores Western Calls to Free Captured Ukrainian Ships
Russia on Monday ignored Western calls to release three Ukrainian naval ships it fired on and captured near Crimea at the weekend and accused Kiev of plotting with its Western allies to provoke a conflict.Kiev in turn accused Russia of military aggression and put its armed forces on full combat alert, saying it reserved the right to defend itself. Ukrainian lawmakers were due to decide whether to introduce martial law for two months later on Monday, a move President Petro Poroshenko…
TurkStream Gas Conduit Offshore Section Complete
The pipe-laying vessel Pioneering Spirit pipelaying vessel completed the construction of the offshore section of the TurkStream gas pipeline in the Black Sea. The TurkStream pipeline will carry Russian gas across the Black Sea to Turkey.The command to weld the final joint of the gas pipeline’s second string was given by Vladimir Putin, President of the Russian Federation, and Recep Tayyip Erdogan, President of the Republic of Turkey.“Construction of TurkStream – a new gas pipeline connecting Russia and Turkey via the Black Sea – is entering its final stage.
Shipbuilding: Sovcomflot Orders Two LNG-Fueled Tankers
Though the tanker market has been a global maritime laggard in 2018, with overcapacity cited as the chief culprit, apparently it could not dissuade PAO Sovcomflot (SCF Group) from inking a deal wih Rosneft, Zvezda Shipbuilding Complex and VEB Group for a pair of Aframax tankers. VEB-Leasing will finance the construction, and Rosneft signed a 20-year time-charter for the pair.The 114,000 dwt ships will be LNG fueled and 1A/1B ice class, able to operate year-round in areas with difficult ice conditions, including sub-Arctic seas and Russian ports of the Baltic regio“We welcome the plans of the Russian shipbuilders, from Zvezda Shipbuilding Complex…
Rosneft Orders Two Oil Tankers from Zvezda Shipyard
Russian oil company Rosneft announced it has ordered two Aframax crude oil tankers to be built at Russia's far eastern Zvezda shipyard for scheduled delivery in 2022.The Russian-flagged vessels will have a deadweight of 114,000 metric tons and a 1A/1B ice class, which makes them able to operate in icy conditions year round, including in sub-Arctic seas and Russian ports of the Baltic region, said Russian shipping company PAO Sovcomflot (SCF Group).According to the documents, Arctic Leasing will place orders for construction of the two Aframax tankers at the shipyard…
Clean Arctic Alliance Welcomes Russian-Finnish Deal on Green Fuel
The Clean Arctic Alliance welcomes the joint statement by Russian President Vladimir Putin and Finnish President Sauli Niinisto on the need to move to cleaner ships’ fuels such as LNG in the Arctic.Speaking on behalf of the Clean Arctic Alliance, Alexey Knizhnikov of WWF Russia said that “the risks of using heavy fuel oil in the Arctic are too high, and we welcome President Putin and President Niinisto’s vision and leadership in seeking to move to cleaner fuels for Arctic shipping.
Japan, Russia Join for Trans-Siberian Rail Transportation
Japan and Russia plan to officially develop a freight transport route between the two countries via the Trans-Siberian Railway, the Yomiuri newspaper reported.The report said that the two governments aim to foster mutual economic cooperation by energizing the “third distribution channel,” after sea and air routes.Now cargo between Japan and Russia are delivered mainly either by air or by sea. According to the Japanese Ministry of transport, terms of delivery of goods by sea ranged from 53 to 62 days.
Gazprom Extends Gas Contract with Austria’s OMV
Russian gas firm Gazprom has signed a new deal to extend the existing gas supply contract with Austria’s OMV until 2040. Under the existing contract between Gazprom Export and OMV Gas Marketing & Trading, Gazprom agreed to supply gas to OMV until 2028. The document was signed in the presence of Vladimir Putin, President of the Russian Federation, and Sebastian Kurz, Federal Chancellor of Austria, as part of the celebrations marking 50 years of supplies of Russian gas to Austria.
France's Macron Calls for Global Trade Reform
French President Emmanuel Macron on Wednesday said it was time for the world's biggest economic powers to start talks on reshaping World Trade Organization rules to prevent current tensions spiraling into trade wars.Macron's comments before the Paris-based Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) came as the European Union faced less than 48 hours to win an exemption from U.S. tariffs on European aluminium and steel."This is about a complete update of global competition rules…
Total, Novatek Pact for Arctic LNG 2 Project
In the presence of the President of the Russian Federation, Vladimir Putin, and the President of the French Republic, Emmanuel Macron, Total has signed an agreement with Novatek outlining the terms upon which Total shall acquire a direct working interest of 10% in Arctic LNG 2, a giant liquefied natural gas project lead by Novatek on the Gydan Peninsula in the north of Siberia. Taking account of Total’s approximate 19% stake in Novatek and Novatek’s intention to retain 60% of the project, the Group's overall economic interest in this new LNG project will be approximately 21.5%.
With Eye on Russia, US Navy Reestablishing Its Second Fleet
The United States Navy is re-establishing its Second Fleet, responsible for the northern Atlantic Ocean, nearly seven years after it was disbanded as the Pentagon puts countering Russia at the heart of its military strategy.“Our National Defense Strategy makes clear that we’re back in an era of great power competition as the security environment continues to grow more challenging and complex,” Chief of U.S. Naval Operations Admiral John Richardson said on Friday.“Second Fleet will exercise operational and administrative authorities over assigned ships…
Russia's Grip on Biggest Port Operator Tightens
Moscow tightened its grip on Russia's biggest port operator on Friday, making a government official chairman and ousting representatives of the only private shareholder from the board.The changes follow the arrest last month on organized crime and embezzlement charges of Ziyavudin Magomedov, head of the Summa conglomerate which with a joint venture partner owns a 50.1 percent stake in the port operator. He denies the charges.Several senior Russian business executives have said the prosecution would allow the state to extend its control over the Russian economy…
Christophe de Margerie Moves 1st Yamal LNG Cargo
On 8 December 2017, the icebreaking LNG carrier Christophe de Margerie completed her first loading at the Port of Sabetta, on the Yamal Peninsular, with her first cargo of liquefied natural gas (LNG) produced at the Yamal LNG plant. The ceremony was attended by: the Russian President Vladimir Putin, together with Sergey Belousov, Aide to the President; Sergey Donskoy, Russia’s Minister for Natural Resources and Environmental Protection among others. Vladimir Putin said: “This is a remarkable day for us all.
Putin Okays Loading Start at Yamal LNG
President Vladimir Putin on Friday launched the first loading of liquefied natural gas at the Novatek-led Yamal LNG project in the Arctic, which will further expand Russia's global energy reach. The Yamal project, which required investments of $27 billion, will allow Russia to fulfil a plan to double its share of the global LNG market by 2020 from around 4 percent now. The LNG was loaded onto the ice class tanker "Christophe de Margerie", named after the former head of France's energy major Total, who died in a plane crash in Moscow in 2014. Total holds a 20 percent stake in Yamal LNG.
U.S. Commerce Chief Ross Reportedly Divests Shipping Interests
According to a Reuters report, U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross has divested his interests in oil tanker company Diamond S Shipping and is in the process of selling off his holdings in another shipping firm, Navigator Holdings, a Trump administration official said earlier this week. Ross had originally intended to retain his shipping interests following his confirmation in February. But the 79-year-old investor came under criticism after disclosures on Sunday that one of Navigator's major clients is the Russian gas company Sibur…
Rosneft, NIOC Ink Cooperation Deal
Russian oil producer Rosneft and the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) have agreed an outline deal to work together on a number of “strategic” projects in Iran together worth up to $30 billion, Reuters reported quoting Rosneft’s head Igor Sechin as saying. The potential collaboration with Iran would further strengthen Rosneft’s position in the Middle East, the company having already secured a number of deals in the region, including the acquisition of a majority stake in Iraqi Kurdistan’s main oil pipeline.
Brent Crude at 27-month High Even as U.S. Exports spike
Saudi Crown Prince takes bullish stance on supply cut deal; U.S. crude inventories show surprise build even as crude exports hit new record four-week average. Brent crude closed at a 27-month high on Thursday as the market focused more on comments from Saudi Arabia about ending a global supply glut instead of an unexpected increase in U.S. crude inventories and high U.S. production and exports. Brent futures gained 86 cents, or 1.5 percent, to settle at $59.30 a barrel, its highest close since July 3, 2015. U.S.
Russia to build 15 Tankers at South Korean Shipyards
Fifteen tankers will be built at South Korean shipyards to transport the products of the Yamal LNG plant, TASS cites Russian President Vladimir Putin as saying. “We have noted with satisfaction the successful cooperation in the energy sector: South Korean companies are participating in the Sakhalin-1 and Sakhalin-2 projects, we are working on the issue of increasing purchases of liquefied natural gas,” the report quoted President Putin. Besides, Vladimir Putin marked the advantages…
Shipbuilding: Mega Yards
The Woodmac report we saw offered us cause for pause — “Strong activity from the (major oil companies)” while “national oil companies have tightened their purse strings.” What Maritime Reporter found, was that national oil companies — nation-builders, for many — are putting their money in affiliate shipyards. The hope of two, new shipbuilding giants is jobs, innovation, national survival and export security. The model is to invite those who have done it before: Koreans, Japanese, French and a contractor with offshore and marine experience.
Trump to Promote US Natgas Exports in Russia's Backyard
President Donald Trump will use fast-growing supplies of U.S. natural gas as a political tool when he meets in Warsaw on Thursday with leaders of a dozen countries that are captive to Russia for their energy needs. In recent years, Moscow has cut off gas shipments during pricing disputes with neighboring countries in winter months. Exports from the United States would help reduce their dependence on Russia. Trump will tell the group that Washington wants to help allies by making it as easy as possible for U.S.
Novatek Aims to Topple Qatar from LNG Top Spot
Russian gas producer Novatek aims to topple Qatar as the world's biggest exporter of liquefied natural gas as it gets closer to completing its first LNG project, a top executive said, batting away concerns about U.S. sanctions on the sector. The country's largest non-state gas producer is expected to start exporting LNG from the first phase of the Yamal project, situated far above the Arctic circle, towards the end of this year and may bring forward its final stage by six months, CFO Mark Gyetvay said.
World’s First Ice-breaking LNG Carrier Christened
The world`s first icebreaking liquefied natural gas (LNG) carrier was named Christophe de Margerie in St. Petersburg, Russia. Russia’s President Vladimir Putin, South Korea’s Ambassador to Russia Park Dae-bong and Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Co. (DSME) CEO Jung Sung-leep attended the naming ceremony for the country’s new carrier. The ship will be deployed for Russia’s national Far East resource development in the Yamal Peninsula, in the western part of Siberia. The icebreaking LNG carrier, 299 meters long and 50 meters wide, can carry 173,600 cubic meters of LNG.
North Korea's New Ferry Service Makes First Trip to Russia
A new ferry line between isolated North Korea and its neighbour Russia docked for the first time at the Russian Pacific port of Vladivostok on Thursday. The ferry's Russian operators say it is purely a commercial venture, but it coincides with what some academics say is a drive by North Korea's leader, Kim Jong Un, to build ties with Moscow in case its closest ally China turns its back. Journalists were unable to see passengers disembarking from the ship, the North Korean-flagged Mangyongbong, because Russian officials kept them away from the quayside, citing unspecified security reasons. Reuters television was able to speak to three passengers, who said they were representatives of Chinese tourism agencies.
Russia Wants to Sell Sovcomflot to Small-stake Investors
Russia plans to sell part of state shipping firm Sovcomflot next month, hoping to draw in a wide range of small-stake investors rather than a strategic buyer who could threaten Moscow's control of the group, banking and industry sources say. The current era of low tanker market prices is far from the ideal time for Sovcomflot to raise revenue with a share offer, as freight rates were at their highs in 2015. Sovcomflot operates the world's second largest fleet of oil tankers. But…