• 4 minutes Phase One trade deal, for China it is all about technology war
  • 7 minutes IRAN / USA
  • 11 minutes Shale Oil Fiasco
  • 16 minutes Swedes Think Climate Policy Worst Waste of Taxpayers' Money in 2019
  • 2 hours Indonesia Stands Up to China. Will Japan Help?
  • 4 hours We're freezing! Isn't it great? The carbon tax must be working!
  • 6 hours Trump capitulated
  • 9 hours Three oil pipeline projects inch toward goal-line for Canada
  • 14 hours The Libyan Oil in a Sea of Chaos, War and Disruptions
  • 1 day Trump has changed into a World Leader
  • 5 hours Gravity is a scam!
  • 7 hours Yet another Petroteq debt for equity deal
  • 3 hours US Shale: Technology
  • 21 hours Prototype Haliade X 12MW turbine starts operating in Rotterdam
  • 17 hours OIL & GAS LOSSES! Schlumberger Posts $10B Loss in 2019
  • 1 day Beijing Must Face Reality That Taiwan is Independent
  • 1 hour Thanks to Trump, the Iranian Mullahs Are Going Bankrupt
  • 2 hours Which emissions are worse?: Cows vs. Keystone Pipeline
Alt Text

The Cannabis Industry’s Dirty Energy Secret

The business of growing cannabis…

Alt Text

The Single Biggest Factor In Oil This Week

China has been the key…

Alt Text

Will The Permian Peak This Year?

Though many investors are still…

James Burgess

James Burgess

James Burgess studied Business Management at the University of Nottingham. He has worked in property development, chartered surveying, marketing, law, and accounts. He has also…

More Info

Premium Content

Russia Plays Ukraine Gas Card—Again

Russia appears to be backing down slightly over Ukraine, with President Vladimir Putin saying that military force would be a last resort amid the threat of US sanctions, but Moscow is expectedly playing the gas card—again.   

Speaking in a live televised address on RT News, Putin said Russia would employ military force in Ukraine as a last resort, but still reserved the right to use all options in Ukraine to protect from the threat of “terror”.

"As for bringing in forces, for now there is no such need but such a possibility exists," he said. "What could serve as a reason to use military force? It would naturally be the last resort, absolutely the last."

Moscow views recent events in Ukraine as no less than a coup that led to the ouster of pro-Russian Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych.

Related Article: Ukraine Refinery Halts Amid Tensions with Russia

US officials have threatened to impose sanctions on Russia over the crisis in Ukraine, while Putin commented that such a move would be counterproductive. Putin noted in his public address that Moscow did not believe there was a political future for Yanukovych and was concerned only for “humanitarian reasons”.

The ouster of Yanukovych was the culmination of months of street protests in Kiev. The latest crisis is in response to Russia’s seizure of Ukraine’s Crimea region, where Russia houses its Black Sea Fleet, which has led to an ongoing military standoff between Ukrainian troops and pro-Russian forces at the Belbek airbase.  

After a day of panic on Monday, Putin’s comments today sparked a lift in the Russian bond markets.

Putin’s comments come as US Secretary of State John Kerry arrived in the Ukrainian capital Kiev, bringing with him news of an economic package and technical assistance for the country.   

Coupled with the looming threat of a Russian incursion into parts of eastern and southern Ukraine, Russia is also trying to raise the pressure on Ukraine by predictably playing the gas card.

Russian gas giant Gazprom has threatened to remove a gas price discount in April. However, according to Robert Bensh, an expert with 13 years of experience leading oil and gas companies in Ukraine, Gazprom’s move could actually bolster the new government in Kiev.

“This move by Gazprom was not unexpected—especially since the discount in question was a deal made under Yanukovych late last year. So this is an obvious reprisal for his ouster,” Bensh told Oilprice.com today.

Related Article: Russia Eyes China in Bid to Expand Asian Energy Ties

“But what’s interesting is that the new administration in Kiev could take advantage of this and play the Russian aggression card when it has to implement an increase in domestic gas prices in order to satisfy the IMF [International Monetary Fund],” Bensh said.

“This will make it much easier for the new administration to convince the public of the need for a gas price increase, so unwittingly, Moscow, through Gazprom, may be helping to prop up the new government in Kiev.”  

The US is also considering a Congressional push to approve $1 billion in loan guarantees to help ease the sting of proposed energy subsidy cuts.

By James Burgess of Oilprice.com




Download The Free Oilprice App Today

Back to homepage




Leave a comment

Leave a comment




Oilprice - The No. 1 Source for Oil & Energy News