Dec 12, 2006

Russia's Strong-Arm Tactics

According to The Economist, the Shell’s recent secession of control over the Sakhalin-2 project should not come as a surprise. Vladimir Putin’s regime shamelessly dismembered Yukos, an oil firm owned by a political rival. And Russia’s government has made little secret that it regards energy as a legitimate tool of foreign policy in an energy hungry world. The grab for Sakhalin is just the latest tightening of Russia’s grip on its oil and gas reserves. The Kremlin is discouraging foreign participation in the exploitation of energy reserves: legislation is planned to limit outsiders, in future, to minority stakes in energy and precious-metal firms.

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