To Tap Arctic Oil, Russia Partners With Exxon Mobil
Fri, 05/25/2012 - 03:31 EDT - NPR - National Public Radio (Business News)
Moscow's recent deals with foreign oil companies are designed to maintain Russia as the world's No. 1 oil producer. The biggest deal, with Exxon Mobil, would put billions of dollars toward exploiting vast oil and gas reserves in Russia's Arctic waters.» E-Mail This» Add to Del.icio.us
Exxon Mobil Corp.’s dream of drilling in the Russian Arctic may risk running aground on the politics of Ukraine.
The company plans to start drilling in August in the Arctic’s remote Kara Sea — the centerpiece of Exxon’s global alliance with Russian state-controlled OAO Rosneft. The partnership, which includes shale exploration in Siberia and joint venture fields in Texas, will come under greater scrutiny after the U.S. placed sanctions on Rosneft’s Chief Executive Officer Igor Sechin.
Lundin Petroleum AB, the Swedish explorer focused on Norway, said there won’t be any new oil output in the ice-filled waters of the Arctic for at least 15 years because of technical and logistical challenges.
“I don’t think we’ll see any oil production in the Arctic any time soon — probably not this decade and not the next,” Chairman Ian Lundin said in a Feb. 20 interview in Stockholm. “The commercial challenges are too big.”
Russia’s decision to give China a share of prized Arctic exploration licenses as part of a “breakthrough” deal signals how the world’s largest oil and gas producer and the biggest energy consumer are redrawing the global energy map.
As Barack Obama and Vladimir Putin argue over human rights in Russia and the fate of fugitive U.S. intelligence analyst Edward Snowden, the countries’ biggest oil companies are preparing to drill for giant oil discoveries together in the Arctic Ocean.
BAGHDAD – Since the U.S.-led invasion of 2003, Iraq has become one of the world’s top oil producers, and China is now its biggest customer.
China buys nearly half the oil that Iraq produces, nearly 1.5 million barrels a day, and is angling for a bigger share, bidding for a stake now owned by Exxon Mobil in one of Iraq’s largest oil fields.
The Chinese had nothing to do with the war, but from an economic standpoint they are benefiting from it
Russia and Exxon have reached an agreement that opens the way for oil exploration in the Russian sector of the Arctic Ocean. And it allows the Russians access to projects in other parts of the world, including the United States. David Greene talks to Julia Ioffe, of Foreign Policy magazine who's covering the story in Moscow.
The leaders of Russia and Norway said Tuesday they had agreed on a compromise Arctic border in the Barents Sea, ending a 40-year dispute over a region believed to contain vast oil and gas reserves."This solution is about more than a border line under the ocean. It is about developing good neighbour relations," Norwegian Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg said at a joint press conference in Oslo with Russian President Dmitry Medvedev."It will unite much more than divide, and it will become a bridge to cooperation," he added.