7 Sep 2009 10:24

Moscow press review for September 7, 2009

MOSCOW. Sept 7 (Interfax) - The following is a digest of Moscow newspapers published on September 7. Interfax does not accept liability for information in these stories.


Contracts with Naftogaz for gas shipments and transit for 2009-12 were forged in haste in an effort to resolve the problem of frozen gas transit to the Euroepan Union over a conflict with Ukraine, Gazprom managers said back in January But Gazprom has been saying all along that the contracts will not be redrawn, even though Naftogaz seeks additions and adjustments in them. A Naftogaz delegation will travel to Moscow this week to discuss this issue, Naftogaz First Deputy CEO Igor Dydenko said. The first adjustment must be made in the contract for gas shipments: Naftogaz wants Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin's pledge not to sanction Ukraine for not taking the agreed quantities of gas to be documented on paper, he said. (Guarantees Needed).

Alexei Miller's new and eighth deputy could be appointed before the end of September, said a source close to the Gazprom management and another source close to Gazprom Neft . The new top manager will be in charge of the oil block and energy, said the latter. (Part of these functions are currently being performed by a member of the executive board and Mezhregiongaz General Director Kirill Seleznyov). The main candidate for the post is Sergei Kudryashov, a deputy energy minister and an ex-top manager of the defunct oil company Yukos and Rosneft . (Oil Block Operator).

Aluminum giant Rusal, which was affected by the recent accident at the Sayano-Shushenskaya hydroelectric plant, wants to change the rules of the game on the energy market and to oblige energy companies to share part of the pay for electricity with it. Easier terms for consumers like Rusal are envisioned in a draft strategy for the development of the electricity market, which has yet to be endorsed by the government, for their being part of a systemic reliability pool. Large consumers, prepared to limit energy consumption at the system operator' demand, could join the power market and pay an easier price for electricity and power, as done in the United States, said Maxim Rusakov, deputy head of the Sovet Rynka (Market Council) noncommercial partnership. (Power-Sharing).

FosAgro could lose its monopoly on apatite extraction, given the federal subsurface resources management agency Rosnedra's plans to sell the Seligdarskoye apatite field, one of the largest in Russia. The potential buyer is ALROSA . Apatite concentrate is currently extracted by two companies - FosAgro and Evrokhim, which produced 9.8 million tonnes in 2008. FosAgro accounts for 74% of the extraction and Evrokhim consumes almost all concentrate it extracts. (Rival for FosAgro).


Gazprom has rid itself of the last reminder of Sibneft, which it bought from Roman Abramovich four years ago and named it Gazprom Neft. The company has launched the rebranding of gas filling stations, which have been working all these years under the Sibneft trademark. The last reminders of it will disappear by the end of 2011. The project is estimated at $220 million, but Gazprom Neft is sure it will pay back, given the planned growth in sales by 15%-20%. (Page 6, Gazprom Getting Rid of Sibneft).

The Central Bank could tighten the rules of revoking licenses from banks for doubtful reporting before the end of the current quarter. Banks will lose their licenses if their reports are at odds with the actual operations by 3 million rubles. This sum is too insignificant, bankers claimed. As a result, licenses could be revoked from banks that have made undeliberate errors in their reports, they said. (Page 6. Central Bank Names Price for Banking License).

KD Avia airlines, based in Kaliningrad, is the second air company from Russia's top ten after AiRUnion, to have ground to a halt. On Friday the federal air transport agency Rosaviatsia annulled its operator's certificate, while the Arbitration Court of Kaliningrad registered its letter of bankruptcy. On Saturday the company halted flights to all destinations except Moscow and Kyiv. The shutdown of KD Avia, which has failed to get 4 billion rubles in state support, creates a dangerous precedent, experts said. (KD Avia Falls Off Radars).