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The Times: Jeroen van der Veer has kissed and made up with Vladimir Putin

July 10, 2007
Patrick Hosking, Business Commentary

Jeroen van der Veer has kissed and made up with Vladimir Putin. Only seven months after he ceded control of the Sakhalin-2 offshore gasfield to a Russian company, the Shell chief executive has struck a fresh deal in the country, this time with Rosneft.

There are two ways of seeing the rapprochement. One is that a previously arrogant Shell has learnt the rules of the game in Russia. By adopting a bit of humility, it regains its position in the most important energy producing nation outside the Middle East. Like all other oil companies, Shell does not have much choice about whom it does business with. It goes where the black stuff is. The deal could significantly boost its reserves.

The alternative interpretation is that, like the archetypyal battered wife, Shell has returned to its abuser and will suffer for it.

http://business.timesonline.co.uk/tol/business/columnists/article2051269.ece

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