• 2 days PDVSA Booted From Caribbean Terminal Over Unpaid Bills
  • 2 days Russia Warns Ukraine Against Recovering Oil Off The Coast Of Crimea
  • 2 days Syrian Rebels Relinquish Control Of Major Gas Field
  • 2 days Schlumberger Warns Of Moderating Investment In North America
  • 2 days Oil Prices Set For Weekly Loss As Profit Taking Trumps Mideast Tensions
  • 2 days Energy Regulators Look To Guard Grid From Cyberattacks
  • 2 days Mexico Says OPEC Has Not Approached It For Deal Extension
  • 2 days New Video Game Targets Oil Infrastructure
  • 2 days Shell Restarts Bonny Light Exports
  • 2 days Russia’s Rosneft To Take Majority In Kurdish Oil Pipeline
  • 2 days Iraq Struggles To Replace Damaged Kirkuk Equipment As Output Falls
  • 3 days British Utility Companies Brace For Major Reforms
  • 3 days Montenegro A ‘Sweet Spot’ Of Untapped Oil, Gas In The Adriatic
  • 3 days Rosneft CEO: Rising U.S. Shale A Downside Risk To Oil Prices
  • 3 days Brazil Could Invite More Bids For Unsold Pre-Salt Oil Blocks
  • 3 days OPEC/Non-OPEC Seek Consensus On Deal Before Nov Summit
  • 3 days London Stock Exchange Boss Defends Push To Win Aramco IPO
  • 3 days Rosneft Signs $400M Deal With Kurdistan
  • 3 days Kinder Morgan Warns About Trans Mountain Delays
  • 3 days India, China, U.S., Complain Of Venezuelan Crude Oil Quality Issues
  • 4 days Kurdish Kirkuk-Ceyhan Crude Oil Flows Plunge To 225,000 Bpd
  • 4 days Russia, Saudis Team Up To Boost Fracking Tech
  • 4 days Conflicting News Spurs Doubt On Aramco IPO
  • 4 days Exxon Starts Production At New Refinery In Texas
  • 4 days Iraq Asks BP To Redevelop Kirkuk Oil Fields
  • 5 days Oil Prices Rise After U.S. API Reports Strong Crude Inventory Draw
  • 5 days Oil Gains Spur Growth In Canada’s Oil Cities
  • 5 days China To Take 5% Of Rosneft’s Output In New Deal
  • 5 days UAE Oil Giant Seeks Partnership For Possible IPO
  • 5 days Planting Trees Could Cut Emissions As Much As Quitting Oil
  • 5 days VW Fails To Secure Critical Commodity For EVs
  • 5 days Enbridge Pipeline Expansion Finally Approved
  • 5 days Iraqi Forces Seize Control Of North Oil Co Fields In Kirkuk
  • 5 days OPEC Oil Deal Compliance Falls To 86%
  • 6 days U.S. Oil Production To Increase in November As Rig Count Falls
  • 6 days Gazprom Neft Unhappy With OPEC-Russia Production Cut Deal
  • 6 days Disputed Venezuelan Vote Could Lead To More Sanctions, Clashes
  • 6 days EU Urges U.S. Congress To Protect Iran Nuclear Deal
  • 6 days Oil Rig Explosion In Louisiana Leaves 7 Injured, 1 Still Missing
  • 6 days Aramco Says No Plans To Shelve IPO
Alt Text

A New Oil Crisis Is Developing In The Middle East

As Iraqi-Kurds prepare to fight…

Alt Text

Why U.S. Crude Exports Are Booming

U.S. crude oil exports are…

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

Russia Plays Ukraine Gas Card—Again

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




Back to homepage


Leave a comment

Leave a comment




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