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Posts from ‘November, 2006’

Bloomberg Russians Mask Economy’s Weakness With Shopping, Building Frenzy

EXTRACT: In mid-November, government environmental inspectors vowed to revoke the licenses of oil giant Royal Dutch Shell Plc to continue work on a Far East oil exploration venture called Sakhalin 2, in which Shell has a 55 percent stake. Iskyan says the government’s motive is to win a controlling stake in the project for itself. […]

American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research: What Does Putin Want?

(Leon Aron, resident scholar at AEI.)    EXTRACT: Putin’s statist ideology has also been felt by the main foreign investors in Russia’s oil sector. This past fall, the Kremlin halted or threatened to halt operations by Royal Dutch Shell, ExxonMobil, France’s Total, and the Russian-British TNK-BP. Notwithstanding official explanations for this move–from environmental violations to […]

The Miami Herald: FIRMS FINED FOR PRICE-FIXING RUBBER: EU cartel case: Royal Dutch Shell fined $211 million

Thu, Nov. 30, 2006 FLORIDA BUSINESS BRIEFS From Miami Herald Staff and Wire Services The European Commission fined five oil refiners and chemical producers about $682 million, saying they fixed the price of synthetic rubber used to make tires. A sixth company that had alerted authorities escaped a fine. It was the second-largest fine ever […]

Lloyds List: I spy with my little’: Russian secret services… infiltrating SAKHALIN Energy

Last Word Published: Nov 30, 2006 SAKHALIN Energy has tightened its own security, apparently in a bid to prevent Russian secret services from infiltrating the organisation that is developing oil and gas fields off the nation’s east coast. The Shell-led consortium has added new computer technology by installing spyware to protect laptops and office computers […]

Irish Times: Protesters ‘interrogated’locals, says superintendent: ‘Shell’s Corrib gas pipeline’: ‘co-ordinated campaign of intimidation’

By: Conor Lally, Irish Times Published: Nov 30, 2006 The senior Garda officer in charge of policing the protest at Shell’s Corrib gas pipeline has said some protesters had established checkpoints on roadways in parts of Mayo at which they “interrogated” local people for up to 45 minutes before refusing passage to some. Supt Joe […]


Published: November 30 2006 02:00 | Last updated: November 30 2006 02:00 Nov 27 2006ASM International: Break-up vote by rebel shareholders is defeated. Nov 14 2006 Stork refuses to implement shareholder-backed break-up of company. Nov 6 2006 Ahold unveils own growth strategy, having spurned rebel investors’ break-up plan. Sept 29 2006 Philips spins off semi-conductor […]

Financial Times: Dutch boards stand up to activist investors

EXTRACT: …Royal Dutch Shell, the Anglo-Dutch energy group, acknowledged that investor unrest was key to its decision to unwind its cumbersome century-old dual-headed governance structure. THE ARTICLE By Ian Bickerton in Amsterdam: Published: November 30 2006 02:00 | Last updated: November 30 2006 02:00 Activist investors have chalked up more than their share of triumphs […]

Financial Times: EU fines synthetic rubber cartel €519m

By Tobias Buck in Brussels: Published: November 30 2006 02:00 | Last updated: November 30 2006 02:00 Chemical and energy groups including Shell, Dow, Eni and Bayer were yesterday punished for operating a price-fixing cartel in the market for synthetic rubber, a ruling that triggered the second highest fine yet imposed by the European Commission. […]

Financial Times: Hambro Mining hit as Russia warnson licences: ‘Mr Mitvol… seen by some… as a maverick and publicity-seeker..’

By Rebecca Bream in London and Arkady Ostrovsky in Moscow: Published: November 30 2006 02:00 | Last updated: November 30 2006 02:00 Shares in Peter Hambro Mining, the London-listed, Russia-based gold producer, fell 14 per cent yesterday after a Russian government environmental watchdog threatened to revoke some of its mining licences. Oleg Mitvol, deputy head […]

Financial Times: Western Oil seeks partner

By James Politi in New York Published: November 30 2006 02:00 | Last updated: November 30 2006 02:00 Western Oil Sands, the Canadian energy company, may be looking for a downstream partner to help it better exploit its main asset, a 20 per cent stake in the $5bn Athabasca oil-sands venture. Western said it had […]

AFX News Limited: Royal Dutch Shell plans ‘considerable’ investments in Bolivian gas sector-report

11.30.2006, 02:35 AM AMSTERDAM (AFX) – Royal Dutch Shell is planning ‘considerable’ investments in the Bolivian gas sector, Dutch daily Het Financieele Dagblad reported, citing Bolivian energy minister Carlos Villegas Quiroga. The oil major also intends to sell part of its 25 pct stake in Bolivian gas transport company Transredes back to the Bolivian state, […]

The Independent: Hambro Mining shares rocked by Russian attack: ‘Oleg Mitvol’

By Andrew Osborn in Moscow Published: 30 November 2006 Shares in the AIM-listed Peter Hambro Mining plunged 14 per cent yesterday after a senior Russian government official questioned the legality and efficiency of the company’s activities in its sole area of operations. Oleg Mitvol, the deputy head of Russia’s state environmental watchdog, said he had […]

The Times: Licence fear hits Hambro Mining: ‘Mr Mitvol is becoming a familiar figure to the natural resources industry…’

November 30, 2006   More than £130 million was wiped off the value of Peter Hambro Mining after an official at Russia’s environment watchdog indicated that it may revoke five of the goldminer’s licences.   Oleg Mitvol, deputy head of the agency, said that Hambro had either violated environmental rules or done nothing to develop […]

The Times: Rubber barons’ fine bounces EU to record antitrust take: illegal cartels

November 30, 2006 Rory Watson in Brussels Five groups pay €519m penalty Whistle-blower Bayer is spared fine   The European Commission has taken a record €1.843 billion (£1.24 billion) in antitrust fines so far this year after imposing a €519 million penalty yesterday on five groups of companies for operating a synthetic rubber cartel. With […]

The Wall Street Journal: EU Fines Rubber Cartel

Decision Illustrates Perils of Cooperating In Price-Fixing Cases By MARY JACOBY and ANNE JOLIS November 30, 2006; Page A12 BRUSSELS — European regulators, in slapping five chemical companies that had fixed prices on synthetic rubber with the EU’s second-highest-ever group-cartel fine, also exposed what defense lawyers call an increasing problem: the inability in Europe to […]

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL: Oil News Roundup: November 29, 2006 4:28 p.m.

Crude-oil futures rallied for a third straight session, climbing above $62 on the New York Mercantile Exchange on unexpected declines in inventories and forecasts of chilly weather heading toward the East Coast. Here is Wednesday’s roundup of oil and energy news: * * * WAGONER’S PROMISE: The Greater Los Angeles Auto Show began with two […]

Daily Telegraph: The age-old message: ingot we trust

EXTRACT: More controversially, he takes the Kremlin’s side in the dispute with Royal Dutch Shell, facing the threat of expulsion from Sakhalin after investing $22bn in the world’s biggest liquefied gas project. “Russia is an unrecognisable country since the day that Shell deal was signed, and the price of oil is much higher. I agree […]

Daily Telegraph: Database: Energy: Thursday 30 November 2006

Last Updated: 12:23am GMT 30/11/2006 A round-up of headlines from across the financial sectors, provided by Bloomberg News. ENERGY • BP has been ordered to show it hasn’t broken a pledge to pay the medical bills of three workers hurt in a blast at a Texas refinery in March 2005 that killed 15 people and […]

The Guardian: Russia wipes £130m from gold miner by threatening to revoke licences: ‘challenged by Oleg Mitvol’

Marianne Barriaux Thursday November 30, 2006 Russia said it was looking at revoking the licences of Peter Hambro, the gold mining company, in a fresh challenge yesterday to western businesses operating in the country. The Russian authorities have already attacked Shell, TNK-BP and ExxonMobil over their environmental records. Shares in Peter Hambro fell nearly 14% […]

The Guardian: Russia takes a golden opportunity: As with Sakhalin-2, the man wielding the big stick was Oleg Mitvol, deputy chief of Rosprirodnadzor

Julia Finch Thursday November 30, 2006 Just two months ago in this column we quoted George Soros’s view of Russia as “a country that does not hesitate to use its monopoly power in devious and arbitrary ways”. Mr Soros was referring to letting the state-controlled Rosneft list in London, but his view was also a […]

Shell to Sea: Protest at HQ of Shell Exploitation Ireland, 52 Lwr Leeson Street Dublin 2:\2PM December 2nd 2006

There will be a demonstration in Dublin outside the Shell Headquarters, 52 Lower Leeson Street, Dublin (corner of Adelaide Road) on Saturday December 2nd at 2PM. Speakers will include local people from Rossport including Willie Corduff and Bríd Ní Sheighin, Finbar Dwyer from the Rossport Solidarity Camp, and a representative of Dublin Shell to Sea. […]

Reuters: Russian steel, mining firms credit ratings lag -S&P

EXTRACT: Doing business in Russia is risky.. An example is the giant Sakhalin-2 oil and gas project, led by Shell, which has come under pressure from the Russian authorities since the Anglo-Dutch oil major said costs would double to $22 billion. THE ARTICLE LONDON, Nov 29 (Reuters) – Doing business in Russia is risky and a […]

BBC News: EU orders fine for rubber cartel: ‘Royal Dutch Shell was fined 160.8m euros’.

The European Commission has fined five oil and chemical companies £519m ($682m) for price-fixing. Italy’s Eni faces the largest fine, of 272m euros (£183m; $357m), while Royal Dutch Shell was fined 160.8m euros. The EU imposed the fine after learning that five firms were fixing the price of synthetic rubber used for tyres. The fine […] Three held in card clone probe: All the men arrested are believed to be Shell employees

(Police swoop on a Shell filling station in Westfield Road. Picture: ROWLAND HOBSON) THREE men have been arrested today (November 29) in early morning raids in connection with an alleged card cloning scam in Peterborough. Fraud squad detectives and police officers swooped on seven properties, including three filling stations, in and around Peterborough shortly after […]

Reuters: Shell Deer Park JV refinery restarts cat cracker

HOUSTON, Nov 29 (Reuters) – Shell Oil Co.-Pemex joint venture Deer Park Refining on Wednesday began restarting a gasoline-producing catalytic cracking unit at the 340,000 barrel per day refinery in Deer Park, Texas, according to a notice filed with the state pollution regulation agency. Normal start-up procedures were to be followed, according to the notice […]

Bloomberg: Cartlel fined EU519 Million: Royal Dutch Shell Plc fined 160.9 million euros as a repeat offender

  By Matthew Newman Nov. 29 (Bloomberg) — Dow Chemical Co., the largest U.S. chemical maker, Eni SpA and three other chemical makers were fined 519 million euros ($682 million) by the European Union for fixing the prices of ingredients in rubber used in tires and shoes. Eni received the biggest penalty at 272.2 million […]

RIA Novosti: Russia environment watchdog to submit Sakhalin II report in Dec.

16:33 | 29/ 11/ 2006  MOSCOW, November 29 (RIA Novosti) – Russia’s environmental watchdog will present a final report on the Sakhalin II oil and gas project in the country’s Far East by mid-December, a senior service official said Wednesday. The service said earlier this month that project operator Sakhalin Energy, controlled by Royal Dutch […]

MarketWatch: BP confirms two recent contractor fatalities in U.S.

By Jessica Resnick-Ault Of DOW JONES NEWSWIRES Last Update: 6:38 AM ET Nov 28, 2006 In yet another blemish to its accident-marred U.S. division, BP PLC (BP) Monday confirmed that two contract workers at its U.S. drilling operations died in on-the-job accidents in mid-November. The first fatality occurred on the Alaskan North Slope on Nov. […]

American Reporter: WHILE YOU WERE DISTRACTED… The Oil Crisis

by Mark Scheinbaum American Reporter Correspondent Lake Worth, Fla. The Oil Crisis: U.S. taxpayers are paying to send oil to Iraq. Shall we try this again? Okay, the ruptured petrochemical infrastructure plus sabotage in Iraq means that Iraqis are using gasoline U.S. troops bring into the oil-rich country. Meanwhile, Royal Dutch Shell for the second […] Mitsui & Co. expects conclusion on Gazprom talks

bbj.hu11. 29, 2006. Wednesday 07:44 The talks include the portion of the €16.7 billion ($22 billion) project cost to be borne by Gazprom and existing investors, Utsuda said in an interview in Tokyo. Mitsui & Co. President Shoei Utsuda said talks by partner Royal Dutch Shell Plc to resolve environmental concerns at Sakhalin-2 and to […]

The Independent: Polonium 210 was cancelled due to signal failure: Russia: ‘It’s robber capitalism, it’s lawless’

By: MARK STEEL Published: Nov 29, 2006 They must be bemused in Chechnya. Because they had about 50,000 people blown up by Putin and no one gave a toss. They probably made countless attempts to interest politicians and reporters from the West, who said: “Hmm, you’ve had your hospital destroyed by a tank, have you? […]

Financial Times: Sakhalin II project problems may be temporary but they are still inexcusable

By Doug Norlen: Published: November 29 2006 02:00 | Last updated: November 29 2006 02:00 From Mr Doug Norlen. Sir, Arkady Ostrovsky’s article “Out on a limb” (November 23), on the controversy-plagued Sakhalin II oil and gas project in Russia, quotes Ian Craig, chief executive of Sakhalin Energy, as claiming that environmental problems are temporary. […]

The Times: Commission plans massive cartel fine: ‘Shell’s fine, as well as ENI’s, was increased because it was a repeat offender’

November 29, 2006    The European Commission is expected to impose today its second-largest cartel fine against Shell, Dow Chemical, ENI, Unipetrol and Trade-Stomil. It is not yet clear the level of the fines to be levied on the oil and chemical firms for fixing prices of synthetic rubber, used mainly in tyre production.    […]

Reuters: EU to set second-highest fine on rubber cartel: *Shell a repeat offender again

EXTRACT: Shell’s fine, as well as Eni’s, was increased from what it would have been under the Commission’s normal calculations because it was a repeat offender. The Commission slapped a 108 million-euro fine on Shell in September for fixing prices of bitumen in the Netherlands. It also fined 13 other firms. THE ARTICLE Tue Nov […]

Bloomberg: Royal Dutch Shell Sakhalin II extract

Royal Dutch Shell Plc (RDSA LN): Russia’s Natural Resources Ministry environmental oversight board Rosprirodnadzor finished a probe into the Shell led Sakhalin-2 project, International Oil Daily reported citing an unidentified agency representative. To contact the reporter for this story: Scott Hamilton in London at  [email protected]

Houston Chonicle: Russia gains confidence, but Shell is hanging on: Gazprom pushes for a bigger stake in energy project

By ALEX LAWLER Reuters News Service LONDON – Royal Dutch Shell is “hanging on in there,” according to a company source, as Russia squeezes its $22 billion Sakhalin-2 oil and gas project over cost overruns, environmental violations and to secure a stake for state firm Gazprom. Sakhalin-2 on the Pacific island of Sakhalin, north of […]

REGNUM: Oleg Mitvol: Russia pays in oil for approvals of Sakhalin 2 project

“If we manage to resolve the problem of the 529 rivers whose ecology has been damaged by the Sakhalin 2 project and a number of other vital problems of Sakhalin, they may depict us in whatever way they like. ‘Do what you can and come what may.’ Ask questions to those people who looked at […]

MarketWatch: Sakhalin-2 full environment report due mid-December – regulator

Last Update: 5:21 PM ET Nov 28, 2006 LONDON (MarketWatch) — Russian environmental regulator Oleg Mitvol said Tuesday he expects to complete in mid-December a full report on alleged environmental damages by Sakhalin Energy Ltd. Mitvol, the deputy head of the Russian Natural Resources Ministry’s environmental watchdog, has already threatened to pull the environmental license […]

The Moscow Times: Mitsui May Sell Some Sakhalin Shares

Wednesday, November 29, 2006. Issue 3550. Page 5. By Miriam Elder Staff Writer Mitsui is close to selling part of its stake in the Sakhalin-2 oil and gas project to Gazprom, the Japanese company’s president said Tuesday. Talks may “soon” be concluded, Shoei Utsuda said in an interview with Bloomberg in Tokyo. He failed to […]

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL: Oil News Roundup: November 28, 2006 3:40 p.m.

Crude-oil futures jumped to nearly $61 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange on forecasts of colder weather and uncertainty ahead of an OPEC meeting. Rising sectarian violence in Iraq, along with weakness in the dollar, added to the bullish sentiment that emerged as traders returned from the four-day Thanksgiving holiday on Monday. Here […]

The Guardian: Poisoning puts business with Russia under a cloud

· Investor trust put at risk after Litvinenko death · Kremlin ‘more concerned about asserting its power’ Terry Macalister Wednesday November 29, 2006 The poisoning in London of a former KGB officer, Alexander Litvinenko, will damage investor confidence in Russia, the primary trade association representing those doing business between Britain and Russia warned yesterday. The […]

Itar-Tass: Findings of Sakhalin-2 checks on way to ministry, prosecutors

28.11.2006, 13.09   MOSCOW, November 28 (Itar-Tass) – The Russian Federal Service for Supervision of Natural Resources (Rosprirodnadzor) has finished checks of compliance with environment legislation by Sakhalin Energy, an operator of the Sakhalin-2 project. A source in the service told ITAR-TASS on Tuesday that “these materials are being turned over to the Ministry of […]

REGNUM: Oleg Mitvol: The court is ashamed of canceling positive ecological report on Sakhalin 2 project

The ecological impacts of the Sakhalin 2 project were first mentioned in the second half of 2006 after 2-3 years of constant warning by ecologists, says the deputy head of the Rosprirodnadzor (Ecological Control Department) Oleg Mitvol said at the online conference at REGNUM on Nov 27. “In June 2006 we began receiving specific reports […] Sakhalin II project checking is over

28.11.2006 The federal service for supervision of natural resource usage finished Sakhalin II project checking. Following the results of the conducted inspection the decision of whether the project operator Sakhalin Energy will be able to keep its production license or not. Additionally the size of penalty charge for violation of environmental legislation will be defined. […]

Reuters: Shell to inspect damaged Nigerian oil facilities

28 Nov 2006 12:15:08 GMT Nigeria violence More  By Tom Ashby LAGOS, Nov 28 (Reuters) – Royal Dutch Shell will soon take a first step to resuming 500,000 barrels per day of Nigerian oil output by sending inspectors to assess pollution and damage to facilities in the western Niger Delta, company sources said on Tuesday. […]

MarketWatch: Ex-oil executive Philip Watts challenges SEC in appeals court

By Siobhan Hughes Last Update: 8:11 AM ET Nov 28, 2006 WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) — Sir Philip Watts, who resigned as chairman of what is now Royal Dutch Shell PLC (RDSA) after an oil-and-gas-reserves overbooking controversy, is tangling with the Securities and Exchange Commission in a court case that may have implications for key tools in […]

New York Times: Alaska to Cut Point Thomson Oil Leases

By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS Published: November 28, 2006 Filed at 12:44 a.m. ET JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Exxon Mobil Corp. is reviewing its legal options in the wake of Alaska’s decision to strip it and other oil companies of their leases in the North Slope’s Point Thomson oil and gas field. The state said Monday […]

AP Worldstream: Kremlin control of natural gas routes to Europe stokes Western unease

By: GEORGE JAHN For the West, the threat from Moscow was supposed to end with the collapse of the Soviet Union 15 years ago. But Russia’s growing energy clout is generating renewed cause for anxiety. The North Atlantic Treaty Organization, set up in the early days of the Cold War to keep Soviet-led forces in […]

Lloyds List: Shell takes big step at Smallfoot

By: Offshore Energy is edited by Martyn Wingrove +44 (0)20 7017 4629 [email protected] Lloyds List: Published: Nov 28, 2006 SHELL has submitted plans to develop the Shamrock and Caravel gas fields in the UK southern North Sea with two unmanned platforms, writes Martyn Wingrove. The Anglo-Dutch oil major intends to install two Trident-design platforms over […]

Irish Times: Learning lessons from Corrib gas: ‘Shell behaved in a bully-boy fashion’

Published: Nov 28, 2006 Gas from the Corrib field, off north Mayo, is not expected to flow until 2009. That may appear to be a long time away but, in terms of the work required in building a pipeline and production terminal, it represents an extremely tight schedule. And with local protests continuing, there is […]

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