Supermajors Shell and BP have been established in Russia for some time now, the former being heavily involved in the Sakhalin Energy project and BP having a 50% stake in TNK-BP as well as being involved in Sakhalin and being a member of the Caspian Pipeline Consortium. It is common knowledge that ConocoPhillips is setting up an office in Moscow, their interest in Russia having been confirmed some time back with their buying a stake in Lukoil, and oil and gas service provider Petrofac is rumoured to be manning up their support office in Moscow.
Despite the dodgy ground on which foreign investors find themselves when they enter the murky world of Russian business, the current oil price and the volume of gas which lies beneath Russian permafrost have combined to make Russia a target for western oil companies who are desperate for access to reserves and are finding themselves shut out of elsewhere. Therefore, the outcome of this meeting will be interesting indeed:
Russian President Vladimir Putin is set to meet executives from US supermajors ExxonMobil, Chevron and ConocoPhillips as they look to boost business in Russia.
Russian agencies quoted Kremlin sources as saying the meeting will take place during Putin’s visit to New York for the United Nations’ summit, which begins today.
All three US supermajors are bidding to take part in the development of Gazprom’s Shtokman gas field.
Gazprom is due to make public a short-list of five bidders for Shtokman out of nine contenders.