8 Dec 2009 10:16

Moscow press review for December 8, 2009

MOSCOW. December 8 (Interfax) - The following is a digest of Moscow newspapers published on December 8. Interfax does not accept liability for information in these stories.


Rosneft will invest $6 million in the existing oil refineries over the next four years, the money will be used for reconstruction or construction of 53 facilities, the company said in a statement. The Samara group of plants bought by the state company at the sale of the Yukos assets will receive $2.4 billion: 18 billion rubles will be invested to modernize the Kuibyshevsky oil refinery, 26 billion rubles in the Syzransky oil refinery, and 25 billion rubles in the Novokuibyshevsky oil refinery. The purpose of investments is a coherent transition to the production of Euro-3, 4, 5 fuels, a company official said. Rosneft will use both its own and borrowed capital to fund these projects. ("Everything for oil refineries").

In 2010 Gazprom should spend almost 14.9 billion rubles ($505 million at the current Central Bank's rate) on the shelf blocks in India and Vietnam. The investment in the Bay of Bengal (India) should total 5.48 billion rubles, in Vietnamese PSAs - 9.43 billion rubles, a source close to Gazprom told Vedomosti. These data were confirmed by a company official. Requirements towards Gazprom are much tougher abroad than in Russia. The company cannot reduce spending on PSA; work should go according to schedule, otherwise it will face fines, the source close to the company told Vedomosti. ("More than at Shtokman ")

United Co. Rusal is unlikely to become a public company this year. The Hong Kong Stock Exchange's listing committee has again postponed a decision about listing Rusal shares, sources close to the company and officials from the banks preparing it for the IPO told Vedomosti. So far it is unclear when the matter will be reconsidered. Most likely, the IPO will be postponed until next year: the deal will not be closed before the holidays, both banks' officials said. ("Did not get a chance before New Year," also Kommersant, page 1 "Hong Kong is alive")

SIBUR Holding and its key shareholder, Gazprombank, are in talks over the purchase of the 50% stake in Biaxplen, a Sibur official told Vedomosti. In early December the holding company already announced about the purchase of another half of this company. The Sibur official is not disclosing the deal scheme. His colleague from Gazprombank decline a request for comment. The whole Biaxplen could set the company back approximately $100 million, a source close to Sibur said. ("Biaxplen for Sibur").


The International Energy Agency (IEA) has submitted what would be for Gazprom a pessimistic forecast for gas markets growth in the EU and worldwide. If no post-Kyoto protocol is signed in Copenhagen, Russia will have to look for new markets. Gazprom's previous sale scenarios involving entry to the U.S. market, are also being ruined, with monopolies being inevitably compelled to look for sale markets in Southeastern Asia. Gazprom is hoping to remedy the situation by a massive construction of natural gas-fueled power plants. (page 11, "IEA assesses Russian gas excesses")

The government will be not considering the structural reform of the railway transport before the end of the year, such a decision was made at a meeting with Russia's first Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov. So far officials failed to reach a consensus on key issues, for instance, separating the infrastructure from transportation services and separating the locomotive haul service. But the Transport Ministry, one of the main critics of the target model of a freight services market developed by RZD, is already prepared for compromises. (page 11, "Railways postponed for the future")

Russian Technologies-controlled state transportation company Rossiya, the country's fifth largest freight company, has been recognized as one of the most troubled Russian airline companies. The carrier's debt is reaching 6 billion rubles. The transfer of Rossiya to Petersburg which has long wanted to get a share in the company could be a solution to the problem. But this could mean the end for Russian Technologies' ambitious project to create Rosavia, a new airline company. (page 1, "'Rossiya' is looking for its own path as always").