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Russia’s Energy Pivot to Asia
Russia’s Energy Pivot to Asia
The rate of energy consumption in the
Although most of gas and oil reserves are situated in the Asian part of Russia most energy trade flows areWest (Europe)-oriented. Having started exporting gas to Asia only in 2009 through Sahalin II plant, Russia is a new player in the Asian energy market. Russia’s share of gas exports to Asia dynamically increased in recent years up to 7–8% of total volume and continues to grow .
Many agreements and deals signed in recent years with China, brought Russian state oil major Rosneft, closer to its goal of exporting more than 1 million barrels of oil per day to China — one of the biggest deals in the history of the global oil industry .
Meanwhile the future role of oil and gas in Asia will depend on whether the pricing is tied more closely with supply and demand fundamentals in the region. It means that the remaining uncertainty in price setting is a key challenge for Russia in implementation of its new energy projects in Asia.
Rosneft agreements with SODECO, Vitol and Marubeni fix the key commercial
parameters that form the basis for future
On June 21, 2013, at the St. Petersburg Economic Forum, Rosneft
signed a new
China’s surge in consumption is also keeping gas prices supported despite a rise in North American shale output and a weak economy in the West. Natural gas supply to China is a major project of Gazprom Group that is taking efforts to arrange pipeline gas export via two export corridors — western and eastern — with the total throughput capacity reaching 68 billion cubic meters a year. An agreement on a price formula to supply 38 billion cubic metres per year of gas by pipeline to China is announced to be reached.
At the same time many smaller Asian consumers of LNG try
to promote alternative approaches to price setting. The first
Gazprom supplies LNG to Asia from its
These projects require significant investment and technological innovations for their development. In order to makeenergy stocks more attractive especially for Asian investors Russian Parliament has passed a new tax system in September 2013.New laws fundamentally change the approach to taxation of the gas industry. These laws will almost double benefits for the extraction of stranded oil (up to 54.8 dollars/bbl.), increasing the efficiency of projects almost 2.5 times when developing new deposits on the shelf. Other measures have also been adopted to facilitate entry of international partners in major projects. Thus, tax legislation in Russia has been restructured in order to attain the most attractive regulations for offshore exploration in the world.
Alongside the implementation of new projects Russia should gain
additional logistical capabilities to
As for the global gas market, today we are observing a complicated geopolitical game between US and Russia in this field. As for 2012 Russia produced 653 billion cubic meters of gas, while the U.S. produced 651 billion cubic meters, making them the top two producers in the world.
Does it mean that Russia missed the shale gas revolution or and lost another geopolitical game? Can the United States enter and dominate international markets with its shale gas? The answer is negative by all means. Despite a certain euphoria that has been associated with the rapid growth of shale gas and oil, the problem of resource constraints is still acute. There are two main doubts about perspectives of shale gas: longevity and cost.
Independent petroleum geologists and investors estimate approximately 15–20 years of potential future shale gas supply at present consumption rates in the US . The pace of growth in the US oil and gas production continues to decline overall, and the US is struggling to increase its share only slightly in the total matrix of energy supply. More and more wells must be drilled and operated to maintain production as the average productivity per well is declining. Since 1990, the number of operating gas wells in the United States has increased by 90% while the average productivity per well has declined by 38%. In 2011 shale gas production in the US increased by about 84%, while in 2012 this figure was only 9%. All that means there likely will not be enough gas in US to satisfy growing Asia’s demand in energy and to fend off Russian dominance of the global gas market in the long term.
The extraction of fuel has to be carried out in ever
more difficult conditions and require an increasing amount
of material and financial resources. The cost of shale gas production
is five times higher than that of conventional gas not mentioning
devastating ecological consequences of shale gas extraction, the
environmental impact of the hydraulic fracturing, also known
as ‘fracking’, is under intense debate . In that sense
Russia’s stake on
Noteworthy the fact that Russia was not included in American
Unconventional Gas Technical Engagement Program (UGTEP) . UGTEP
By all means the centre of gravity in energy markets
is shifting East. In Russia we can observean inevitable
combination of European and Asian energy dimensions that provides
a unique challenge and opportunity for formation of Eurasian energy
market. Analysis of production and transportation costs shows that due
to geographical proximity and comparatively acceptable production prices
Russian energy is quite competitive in the dynamically developing
- W.K. Lászlo Varró,
A. S. CorbeauDeveloping a Natural Gas Trading Hubin Asia Obstacles and Opportunities, IEA Publications, 2012 p.24
- D.Dyomkin Russia grabs China oil and gas export deals, Financial Post, October 22, 2013
- Rosneft President and Chairman of the Management Board Address to The World Energy Congress
- After The
Gold Rush: A Perspective on Future
U. S. Natural Gas Supply and Price
- Fracking: a serious concern for surface water as well as ground water
- Unconventional Gas Technical Engagement Program (UGTEP)
- Gas Exporting Countries Forum (GECF)
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