12 Oct 2009 10:16

Moscow press review for October 12, 2009

MOSCOW. Oct 12 (Interfax) - The following is a digest of Moscow newspapers published on October 12. Interfax does not accept liability for information in these stories.


Gazprom will build two gas pipelines to China and launch deliveries in 2014-2015. The Rosneft project of building a refinery in China is stalling. Rosneft expected to sign an agreement on the principles of building a refinery with a capacity of 15 million tonnes in Tianjin, a source close to the company reports. Rosneft has been conducting the talks on the project with CNPC which also implies the construction of a network of filling stations since 2006. The feasibility study has been made, Sergei Bogdanchikov, the president of the state-owned corporation, announced in September. The document has all the authorizations of the Russian side, but there is no official expert review on the part of the Chinese government, the source added. The agreements are expected to be signed during the official visit of Prime Minister Vladimir Putin to China beginning on Monday. ("Chinese Promises")

Polyus Gold has filed an application with the State Reserves Commission for increasing the reserves of Nezhdaninskoye goldfield in Yakutia by 151.6 tonnes, a company representative and an official with the Natural Resources' Ministry told Vedomosti. The additional reserves were identified in the process of geological prospecting at the beginning of the year, they said. This means that the combined reserves of the field, according to Russian standards (B+C1+C2 categories), will go soar by 32% to approximately 628.6 tonnes (the average gold content being 4.89 grams per one tonne). ("Polyus adds Gold")

Russia will offer raw the materials base of the Far East and Eastern Siberia to China. The cooperation agreement spanning the period until 2018 implies the joint development of Russian mineral deposits, however, processing and producing facilities will be built in Chinese territory. ("Russia won't cope")

Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has prolonged by nine more months higher import duties on foreign-made cars. However, in July 2010 the Cabinet may reduce the duties on new cars to the pre-crisis level. ("Second Term for Car Duties", also Rossiiskaya Gazeta p. 1 "Nine Months More")

The Russian Finance Ministry has published an estimate of the execution of the federal budget for the first nine months of the year. The forecasts of a skyrocketing budget deficit this year have not materialized so far. Oil and gas revenues have been helpful as the customs and the Federal State Property Agency posted only two thirds of the targeted revenue volumes. ("No need to Lend", also Kommersant p. 2 "Budget Deficit refuses to grow")

The governments of several countries are dissatisfied with the plan of the consortium of Magna and Sberbank to rescue Opel and don't want to help the car-maker. Spain is unprepared to help Opel plants in its territory - there is no confidence in the Opel development plan made by Magna. The British government has its own doubts about the Opel restructuring plan. ("Magna is sent rolling", also Kommersant p. 9 "Magna drives past State Financing")

Starting with 2010 it will be possible to learn from the Russian Central Bank website who owns a bank or determines its decisions. Banks can go on concealing this information but then they will risk losing the right to attract private deposits. ("Really Important Persons")

The Russian Central Bank intends to restrict the possibilities of banks to take foreign loans. Alexei Simanovsky, Director of its Banking Regulation and Oversight Department, named three possible options: the restriction of the share of foreign loans in liabilities, the restriction of the foreign exchange position and the regulation of the mandatory reserves of banks. Each option has its pros and cons, he said. ("Save at Home")


Gazprom exports to Europe have returned to last year's level and since August exceeded it thanks to low prices. However, the monopoly's partners still insist on the cancellation of penalties for failing to take all the gas and try to buy cheaper fuel on the spot market. If Gazprom agrees, Russian gas exports may fall again. (p. 11 "Gazprom pulling up Exports")

Spending on rebuilding the Sayano-Shushenskaya HPP will not be included in the 2010 energy tariff and state support to RusHydro may be limited to the assignment of money for completing the construction of a spillway. The company gives assurances that it can cope with financing the construction using loans and its own funds. The government is ready to raise tariffs only for the Federal Network Company which will have to promptly build networks for reliable energy supplies in Siberia. (p. 11 "Sayano-Shushenskaya HPP not included in Tariff")

Synergy will become the first Russian company to attract capital on the open market since the start of the crisis. This week Renaissance Capital and VTB Capital are closing a deal for up to 25% in the alcohol producer. What makes the placement special is that there are several organizers of the deal and the gains from it will be spent mainly on debt payments. Investors insist on higher discounts to the market price than before the crisis. (p. 1 "Synergy to pour out more Capital")