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Russia Sanctions Failing to Stanch Energy Deals With Japan

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By John Donovan

Nato says that Russia has amassed 20,000 combat-ready troops on the border of eastern Ukraine.

The US and the EU have stepped up sanction measures on Russia moving from targeted to sector sanctions. 

Unfortunately for Royal Dutch Shell its current business and future prospects depend on maintaining good relations with Putin.

Hence the bootlicking by Shell CEO Ben van Beurden when he met with Putin following the Russian invasion and annexation of Crimea. 

The Sakhalin II project in which Shell used to be the majority stakeholder still remains an important asset to the oil and gas giant. Sanctions may yet impact on Sakhalin II.

Extracts from a Bloomberg News article by Chou Hui Hong, Anna Shiryaevskaya and Tsuyoshi Inajima published 6 August 2014

Japan will freeze assets of individuals or groups involved in increasing instability in Ukraine and in the annexation of Crimea, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said July 28. Russia’s foreign ministry said July 29 that Japan’s new sanctions are “unfriendly, shortsighted” and will hurt bilateral relations.

Russia’s Sakhalin facility near Japan’s northern island of Hokkaido provides almost 9.5 percent of Japan’s gas, according to Royal Dutch Shell Plc, which owns a quarter of the project.

Russian President Putin’s continued support for separatists in eastern Ukraine has prompted the U.S. and European Union to impose restrictions on the operations of some banks and energy companies in an effort to isolate the Russian economy.

FULL BLOOMBERG ARTICLE

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SCREENSHOTS FROM A VIDEO PUBLISHED BY RT.com on 18 April 2014 

Russia’s annexation of Crimea took place in March 2014. Shell’s collaboration is being seen as a hugely important event to be fully exploited for propaganda purposes by Putin. 

1 Comment on “Russia Sanctions Failing to Stanch Energy Deals With Japan”

  1. #1 Zik Gbemre
    on Aug 6th, 2014 at 11:19

    With the above post that “Japan will freeze assets of individuals or groups involved in increasing instability in Ukraine and in the annexation of Crimea,” we are quite happy that the Asian Tiger is taking steps to join the bandwagon of nation’s (like USA and European Union), that have initiated punitive measures through sanctions to stifle the gruel aggression of Russia against Ukraine. We only hope that some of these punitive measures will equally be made to stop the operations of Royal Dutch Shell in Russia since the company owns a quarter of Russia’s Sakhalin facility near Japan’s Northern Island of Hokkaido, which provides almost 9.5 percent of Japan’s gas.

    With U.S. and European Union imposed restrictions on the operations of some banks and energy companies in an effort to isolate the Russian economy, other countries/world powers should equally rise up and take practical steps to initiate further sanctions and punitive measure against Russia and its partners like Shell and pro-Russian Separatists. Somebody has to put President Putin in his place and make him stop the onslaught against Ukraine. Shell, that is in the middle of all of this with its “collaborative tendencies of supporting repressive/aggressive regimes,” should equally nit be left out in such punitive measures.

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