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Slate Gas Strike at Putin "Energy Empire"

Slate Gas Strike at Putin "Energy Empire"

According to Federal customs service, physical volumes of export of the Russian natural gas far abroad in 2009 decreased by 23,9% - to 120,5 billion cubic m. Gazprom extraction in 2009 fell to 462,2 billion cubic m that is by 16% below the level of 2008.

Raw materials overabundance could be seen on the European market due to the increase of offer of GNC and development of extraction of slate gas in the USA. As a result contract prices of Gazprom of last year essentially exceed raw materials cost on wholesale markets. Due to this fact many buyers of monopoly tried in 2009 to buy minimum of the Russian gas which was provided by take or pay contracts.

Slate gas is not the competitor to natural gas in the Russian Federation. Such opinion was stated today to the journalists by the Minister of Natural Resources and Ecology Jury Trutnev. As he said, slate gas cannot compete to natural gas under the price in connection with higher cost price and capital investments demanded for working out of deposits of slate gas. The minister noticed that in the future, however, the structure of the gas market would undergo considerable changes in connection with working out of slate gas.

Earlier the chairman of board of LLC "Gazprom" Alexey Miller acted with the same statement. As he said, recently the theme of slate gas is unduly exaggerated in mass-media. He noticed that the technology of extraction of slate gas is such that that its cost price is much more expensive, than of natural gas. Therefore, as he said, slate gas can be competitive only where there's a deficiency of natural gas, that is it can be, for example, in the USA but not in Europe. A.Miller also noticed that growth of extraction of slate gas in the USA is simultaneously accompanied by decrease in extraction of natural gas. As he said, by 2020 stocks of slate gas in the USA can be depleted completely.

- It is clear that Trutnev and Miller should calm public down but the situation actually is obvious - the rate of "power empire" on stupid extraction and oil and gas export fails and the matter is in technical progress in which states-petroparasites don't participate, - editor-in-chief of FORUM.msk Anatoly Baranov considers. - The story similar to the one with synthetic fuel which was absolutely noncompetitive under the price when the cost of oil was less than 25 dollars for barrel but when its price grew several times it became favourable and economically expedient to produce fuel from oil seed rape. The same with slate gas - natural gas fields are becoming exhausted, new deposits are in more and more hard-to-reach spots that increases extraction and transportation cost price and in a while Miller's arguments will simply become outdated. It is progress and it cannot be at a stop, as the price stipulated in long-term contracts of Gazprom. Once Russia was a world monopolist on world sales of hemp and ship wood which were required to roughly growing fleet of the European powers. Meanwhile Russia didn't have own fleet for long time that most ruinously effected our history. But then world trade found out other sources of wood and ropes began to pleach from a jute palm tree. The same situation with oil and gas which are required by world industry in escalating quantities and authorities in Russia believe that such situation will remain for many centuries and it is possible to liquidate own industrial production in general as to sell raw materials seems more favourable, than to spend it for own manufacture. However the raw materials cannot cost more expensive, than the products being produced from it that not only imposes restrictions on a boundless rise in prices but also forces manufacture to search for more profitable energy sources and raw materials. One of these days our state will find itself in the same situation as merchants in Arkhangelsk and Vologda who remained with huge stocks of non-realized hemp. While there's no won manufacture which could compensate losses in the world market of energy carriers...


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