No. 161

  USRCC Business Newsletter
USRCC Activities

The U.S.-Russia Chamber of Commerce
The 9th Annual Welcome Reception Honoring Delegations from 
Russia, Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan 
to the Offshore Technology Conference (OTC 2018) 

The USRCC is pleased to invite you to our 9th Annual OTC reception - one of our largest annual events that is attended by oil and gas industry leaders and government officials from around the world. 

The  Offshore Technology Conference  is the largest oil and gas sector trade show in the world. This conference provides energy professionals the opportunity to meet and exchange ideas and opinions to advance scientific and technical knowledge for offshore resources and environmental matters.

Tuesday, May 1, 2018
6:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Hotel ZAZA, Fountain Room
5701 Main Street
Houston, TX 77005  

Member - $50/Non-Members - $100


Please note: No refunds will be issued after April 29th, 2018



For sponsorship opportunities please contact:
The U.S.-Russia Chamber of Commerce
2900 Wilcrest Drive,  Suite 133,  Houston, TX 77042
Phone: 713.429.4680  Email:  info@usrussiacc.org
Website: www.usrussiacc.org


The 8th Annual Luncheon with His Excellency

Anatoly I. Antonov
Ambassador of the Russian Federation to the United States

Dear Friends,

The USRCC Ambassador Speaker Series with  His Excellency A. I. Antonov scheduled for  April 11, 2018, has been rescheduled to October  2018  due to unforeseeable changes in the Ambassador's schedule. A new date of the Ambassador's visit will be provided shortly.

Should you have any further questions, please contact us at info@usrussiacc.org
His Excellency Anatoly I vanovich Antonov
was born on May 15, 1955, in Omsk, a city in southwestern Siberia. He earned a B.A. and an M.A. in International Relations at the Moscow State Institute of International Relations in 1978 and 1983, respectively. Later, in 2012, Antonov earned a Ph.D. in Political Science at the Institute of World Economy and International Relations in Moscow.

Antonov began his diplomatic career in 1978, spending the next 33 years at the Soviet Ministry of Foreign Affairs and its successor, the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. 

Antonov is fluent in English and Burmese.
Full bio is available  here


New date coming soon

October, 2018
Houston, TX
11:30 am - 1:30 pm

For sponsorship opportunities please contact:
The U.S.-Russia Chamber of Commerce
2900 Wilcrest Drive, Suite 133, Houston, TX 77042
Phone:  713.429.4680
Email:  info@usrussiacc.org   Website:  www.usrussiacc.org

  USRCC Trade Mission to Russia
May 2018

The U.S.-Russia Chamber of Commerce (USRCC) invites you to participate in a Trade mission to the  St. Petersburg International Economic Forum . Participants will have an opportunity to meet Russian government officials and some of the most influential leaders in U.S.-Russia trade and investment relations. The USRCC will coordinate private meetings, an exclusive CEO Roundtable and introductions, in addition to attending the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPEIF).

Participating companies will gain market insights, make industry contacts, solidify business strategies, find business partners, and advance specific projects with the goal of increasing U.S. trade and investment to Russia.

For more details about the Trade Mission please click here

USRCC Internship

The USRCC is looking for new team members!

 play a key role and the contributions they make impact the day-to-day functions of the chamber and shape the future of relationship between Russia and the U.S.

There are many ways you can get involved with the USRCC. Whether you are an experienced leader or a student, there is a place for you. By volunteering you can be at the very centre of our high-profile events held in Houston, Chicago and New York City and interact with influential leaders in the U.S.-Russia trade and investment.
To learn more about the position  click here or contact us directly at info@usrussiacc.org 
call 713.429.4680
USRCC Membership
Are you taking advantage of your  USRCC Member Benefits?

Renew your membership or join for the first time today!

For more information  click here 
Interested in learning more about our 2018 events? 

To see a full list   click here
Members' News
ExxonMobil wins eight deepwater blocks in Brazil's latest bid round

Worldoil.com, April 2, 2018:  IRVING, Texas -- ExxonMobil has increased its holdings in Brazil's pre-salt basins after winning eight additional exploration blocks during Brazil's 15th bid round. The blocks awarded add about 640,000 net acres to the ExxonMobil portfolio. Six of the eight newly awarded blocks will be operated by ExxonMobil.
The additional blocks expand the company's total position in the country to more than two million net acres, making it one of the largest acreage holders among international companies in Brazil.
ExxonMobil and its partners jointly won a total of eight blocks, which include:
  • Two blocks in the Santos area which ExxonMobil will operate with partner Qatar Petroleum.
  • Four blocks in the Campos area: ExxonMobil will operate two blocks with partners Petrobras and Qatar Petroleum; Petrobras will operate two blocks with partners ExxonMobil and Statoil.
  • Two blocks in the Sergipe-Alagoas area which ExxonMobil will operate with partners Queiroz Galvão Exploração e Produção (QGEP) and Murphy Oil Corporation, and which will enhance the value of adjacent blocks already held.  Read more...
The Relevance Of Shell's Sky Energy Scenario

Forbes.com, April 3, 2018: The internet is going gaga over Royal Dutch Shell's new "Sky" scenario, which discusses the impact on the energy industry of efforts to limit climate change.  Many treat the existence of such a scenario developed by a major oil company as evidence that a) an important oil industry player expects this to happen, b) projections of a severe climate policy future are validated,
Writing as an aged methane emission, this is not really new.  In the 1990s, Shell was cited by many environmental advocates for appearing to have sided with them.  As Curtis and Romm said in 1996,
"Imagine another world in which fossil-fuel use had begun a slow, steady decline; more than a third of the market for new electricity generation was supplied from renewable sources; the renewables industry had annual sales of $150 billion; and the fastest-growing new source of power was solar energy. An environmentalist's fantasy, right? No, that's one of two planning scenarios for three to four decades from now, developed by Royal Dutch/Shell Group, the world's most profitable oil company, which is widely viewed as a bench mark for strategic planning."  Read more...
New Emerson Combustion Control Analyzer for Small and Midsize Boiler Users Helps Meet Energy and Environmental Requirements

Emerson.com, April 4, 2018:  SHAKOPEE, MINN. (April 4, 2018) - To improve energy efficiency and meet environmental regulatory requirements for small and midsize boiler markets, Emerson introduces the Rosemount CX1100 in situ oxygen analyzer, the first high-performance, zirconia cell-based combustion control system designed for these users. The new system offers the ease of use, economy, and simplified maintenance they require for flue gas measurement. It features the same sensor reliability found in large industrial technology, but the system is built to the requirements of boilers used in such applications as food and beverage, manufacturing, commercial, and municipal. With increasing environmental requirements, users of light industrial and commercial boilers are faced with escalating compliance demands that increase the need for measurement and control of the fuel-air ratio, which optimizes energy efficiency and reduces emissions.  Read more...
Comcast launches 1-gigabit internet service in Palm Beach County

Sun-sentinel.com, April 3, 2018: Binge watchers in Palm Beach County have reason to rejoice, thanks to a new blazing-fast internet speed available through Comcast.
Residential and business customers will now be able to plug into 1 gigabit-per-second internet services with existing cables in homes and offices in Palm Beach, St. Lucie and Martin counties, the company announced Tuesday. The service, which costs $139.95 a month without a contract, also will be available in three other Treasure Coast counties, as well as parts of Brevard County.
Comcast launched gigabit internet in Broward and Miami-Dade counties in early 2017.
The faster internet service option allows for downloads of TV shows, songs, movies and other media in just seconds, thanks to recently competed technology upgrades made by Comcast.   Read more...
URALCHEM takes part in the agro-industrial exhibition in Kenya

UralChem.com, March 23, 2018: URALCHEM, JSC took part in the 16th agro-industrial exhibition and conference, New Ag International, held in Nairobi, Kenya on 21-23 March. The event was attended by delegations from 60 countries. The largest agrochemical companies from different parts of the world, working in the field of plant nutrition, irrigation, precision agriculture and other areas, presented their achievements.  URALCHEM has been participating in this exhibition and conference since 2009. This time the Company introduced at its stand new and unique products: small-pilled urea and two grades of concentrated calcium nitrate. The former is special because of its very small pills , while the latter boasts the highest concentration of calcium nitrate as a chemical compound, which is far superior to the products of other producers. The exhibition and conference also featured a meeting of the working group on special fertilizers of the International Fertilizer Association (IFA), which includes URALCHEM.  Read more...
Russia's Gazprom says discusses cooperation with Italy's Snam

Reuters.com, April 4, 2018:  MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russian gas giant Gazprom said on Wednesday it has discussed possible cooperation opportunities with Italian gas grid company Snam, Europe's biggest gas pipeline operator. 
Gazprom said the companies discussed cooperation "taking into account Gazprom's implementation of the TurkStream project".
The Russian company also said Snam's Chief Executive Marco Alvera told Gazprom's head Alexei Miller about Snam's plans to "facilitate" creation of new gas transportation routes in the Mediterranean region.  Read more...
Lukoil lifts 15 million tonnes of oil at the North Caspian fields

Neftegaz.ru, April 4, 2018: Astrakhan, 4 April - Neftegaz.RU. Lukoil reached the 15 million tonnes mark in terms of oil produced at the Korchagin and Filanovsky fields located in the North Caspian Sea. Both fields are in their 2nd construction stage.  Construction and commissioning of a production and an injection wells was completed as part of the 2nd stage at the V. Filanovsky field . Further implementation of the drilling program will make it possible to maintain stable production at the project level of 6 million tonnes of oil per year. As part of the 2nd construction stage of  the Y. Korchagin field, the riser block platform topside is being prepared for offshore transportation. The 2nd stage of drilling will kick off development of the reserves in the eastern part of the field.
The Y. Korchagin field  became the 1st discovery of the Lukoil  Group in the North Caspian oil and gas province in 2000. Commercial production started in 2010.  The V. Filanovsky field discovered in 2005 is the largest oil field in the Russian sector of Caspian Sea. The field was commissioned in 2016.  Read more...
Rosneft delays Arctic offshore drilling 

Platts.com, March 30, 2018:   Moscow (Platts)-30 Mar 2018 Russia's top crude producer, Rosneft, is in talks with government authorities to delay work at its Arctic offshore projects as it has failed to drill some wells after Western sanctions blocked cooperation with international majors in the region, natural resources minister Sergei Donskoy said Friday.
* May involve revision of the Kara Sea license: natural resources minister
* Makes discovery in E. Siberia with BP
Rosneft "did not manage to drill some wells" at a number of licenses where previously granted extensions expire this year, Donskoy told reporters, referring to Russia's state subsoil agency.
"Rosnedra is considering their proposals now - to delay by another 1.5-two years," he said.
The ministry could not specify the projects under consideration for postponement. Rosneft did not respond to a comment request.
Rosneft as a state-run company is the owner of the bulk of licenses for Russian Arctic blocks, along with Gazprom.  Read more...
No Matter The Machine, We Keep You Rolling Strong!

Roadrunnertires.com, March 27, 2018: For 50 years, Roadrunner Rubber has been proudly keeping all of your machines moving right here in the USA and around the world!
Whether it's a forklift at your Houston, TX warehouse, an excavator in New York, or an earth mover in Mexico, we have what it takes to keep your machines rolling strong.   Read more...
The Week in Review
Russia, Venezuela Mull Using Petro Cryptocurrency in International Transactions

Sputnik.com, April 3, 2018:  MEXICO (Sputnik) - The possible use of the Venezuelan cryptocurrency Petro in international transactions is being discussed during the ongoing session of the Russian-Venezuelan high-level intergovernmental commission in Caracas, the Venezuelan Foreign Ministry said on Monday.
The meeting is also dedicated to the discussion of bilateral cooperation in the military area, railroad projects in Venezuela, as well as food production, the Foreign Ministry added. According to the ministry, discussions on the strategic alliance between Russian energy company Rosneft and Venezuela's Petroleos de Venezuela S.A. (PDVSA) in the framework of Petromonagas projects, as well as the possibility of manufacturing mining industry equipment are also on agenda.
In its statement, the Venezuelan Foreign Ministry also quoted Russian Deputy Industry and Trade Minister Оleg Ryazancev who said that Russia considered Venezuela to be its strategic partner.   Read more...
Rostec to create Russian management system for nuclear, oil and gas facilities in 2018

Tass.com, March 30, 2018: MOSCOW, March 30. /TASS/. Rostec is going to bring an automated process control system for nuclear power facilities and the oil and gas industry to the market in the fall of 2018, a representative of Rostec told TASS.
The system will use exclusively Russian hardware platforms and software, which will guarantee a high level of system protection against hackers and unauthorized interventions in the work of strategically important enterprises. "The design stage of the automated control system will last until August, it will enter the market in the fall of 2018 with an introduction of 4 months," the source said. According to the state corporation, today the Russian market is dominated by automated process control systems made by foreign companies, in particular, Japanese Yokogawa, German Siemens, Swedish ABB, French Schneider Electric. Russian manufacturers at the same time produce software, or hardware based on imported equipment.  Read more...
From Ankara to Moscow, Eurasia integration is on the move

Atimes.com, April 5, 2018:  The Russia-led Eurasia Economic Union is spreading its wings and gaining strength, with some key projects, big players and big plans in the pipeline. 
As presidents Vladimir Putin, Hassan Rouhani and Recep Tayyip Erdogan met in Ankara for a second Russia-Iran-Turkey summit on the future of Syria, Moscow hosted its 7th International Security Conference attended by defense ministers from dozens of nations.
A more graphic illustration of the synchronicity drive towards Eurasia integration would be hard to find. Crucially, China sent not only a high-ranking delegation to Moscow, but most of all a loud and clear message. General Wei Fenghe, the new Chinese Defense Minister, side by side with Russian counterpart Sergey Shoigu, said: "The Chinese side came to let the Americans know about the close ties between the Russian and Chinese armed forces." Shoigu, for his part, underlined the "special character" of the Russia-China partnership.  Read more...
Russian government allocates millions to support carmakers and light industry

Tass.com, April 2, 2018: MOSCOW, April 2. /TASS/. The Russian government allocated 12.2 bln rubles ($212.63 mln) from its reserve fund to support enterprises carmaking and light industries. The corresponding order of March 30 was published on the official website of the government of the Russian Federation. 
In particular, according to the document, 4 bln rubles ($69.71 mln) were allocated for compensation of losses in the income of Russian leasing companies after providing lessees with discounts on advance payments under leasing contracts for wheeled vehicles, concluded in 2018. This, according to the government, would allow to sell this year at least 15,000 units of equipment.
To stimulate car sales, 3 bln rubles ($52.29 mln) will be allocated to banks to reimburse declining revenues on preferential loans issued in 2018. It is expected that this will allow to sell least 35,500 cars this year Read more...
Russian Gazprombank to Make First Crypto Deals for Major Clients via Switzerland

Sputniknews.com, March 31, 2018:  Cryptocurrency deals are not currently regulated by Russian law, with relevant legislation currently being developed. According to the bank's representative, Switzerland was chosen for its "liberal" laws on cryptocurrencies.
Russia's Gazprombank, the third largest bank in the country, is planning to execute its first test deals with cryptocurrencies later this year via its subsidiary in Switzerland, reports Russian media. According to deputy chief executive Alexander Sobol, the bank doesn't currently have plans for massive introduction of the feature, but is looking into it due to existing demand from some of its major clients. "It's going to be test deals. Not major ones, just for ourselves. Some of our major clients are interested in such services, so we are currently looking into the possibilities of how to organize it," Sobol said.  
He noted that the bank has not yet determined whether it is going to offer such options for its clients or just for its own investments.  Read more...
Russia aims to boost gold reserves, increase sales to India & China

Rt.com, April 4, 2018: An arm of Russia's largest lender, Sberbank CIB, plans to more than double its gold sales to India this year and sell more of the precious metal than forecast to China, its head of global markets Andrey Shemetov told Reuters.
Trade with China is more active this year than the bank originally expected, according to Shemetov. Sberbank plans to upgrade an initial sales forecast of 20 tons of gold to China in 2018. It has already sold 14 tons to Beijing in the first quarter alone. Last year it supplied five tons.
The bank also plans to deliver 25-30 tons of gold to India. In 2017, Sberbank sold 10 tons of gold to the world's second-biggest consumer after China.  Purchases for sales to countries such as China and India go through the bank's Swiss branch, while most of Sberbank CIB's gold purchases from Russian gold miners stay within the country.  Shemetov said that, within Russia, Sberbank will keep its 2018 gold purchases flat at 100 tons, including 64 tons bought from local gold miners.   Read more...
Russian car sales seen up 10 pct y/y in 2018-AEB 

Reuters.com, April 5, 2018: MOSCOW, April 5 (Reuters) - Russia's car market is seen growing 10 percent year-on-year in 2018, the Association of European Businesses (AEB) lobby group said on Thursday, as a modest rebound in the Russian economy helps support sales.
After four consecutive years of decline, Russia's car industry is now recovering faster than anticipated as the economy returns to growth.Having previously refused to give a 2018 forecast because of uncertainty over future government support measures, the AEB now sees new car sales in Russia increasing to 1.75 million units this year, up from the 1.6 million sold in 2017, the AEB said. 
But annual sales are still seen well below a market peak of nearly 3 million a year reached in 2012.
"AEB members forecast total market sales to improve by about 10 percent compared to 2017, to a level of 1.75 million units," Joerg Schreiber, chairman of the AEB automobile manufacturers committee, said in a statement.  Read more...
US-Russia Related News in Russian
Новости членов Палаты
«Роснефть» создает уникальный программный комплекс для геологического моделирования

Rosneft.ru, 4 апреля, 2018:  Специалисты ООО «РН-УфаНИПИнефть» (входит в научно-проектный комплекс НК «Роснефть») разработали прототип программного комплекса для геологического моделирования «РН-Геосим», который использует передовые информационные технологии искусственного интеллекта.
Опытно-промышленная эксплуатация прототипа доказала высокую эффективность применения «РН-Геосим» на месторождениях Компании. В отличие от зарубежных аналогов разрабатываемый комплекс позволяет, в частности, осуществлять в автоматизированном режиме  построение геологических моделей различных месторождений. Первая версия продукта позволит моделировать не менее 80% месторождений Компании, а в перспективе, с развитием комплекса, процессы моделирования будут переведены на «РН-Геосим» полностью.   Читать далее...
«ГАЗПРОМ НЕФТЬ» создает центр цифровых инноваций для решения задач цифровой трансформации бизнеса

Gazprom-neft.ru, 3 апреля, 2018: «Газпром нефть» создает Центр цифровых инноваций (ЦЦИ) для развития и последующего внедрения цифровых технологий в области логистики, переработки и сбыта. В рамках работы центра компания объединит усилия российских технологических и IT-стартапов, компаний-разработчиков и научного сообщества, направленные на поиск и разработку инновационных решений для повышения эффективности бизнеса.
Фокусом ЦЦИ станет создание прорывных цифровых продуктов, предназначенных для развития единой технологической платформы бизнеса «Газпром нефти» в сфере логистики, переработки и сбыта. Она призвана объединить в себе все элементы цепочки добавленной стоимости в одном цифровом пространстве, что позволит более гибко и оперативно управлять эффективностью процессов за счет предиктивного анализа и использования данных в режиме реального времени.   Читать далее...
Новости недели
Отраслевой союз: экспорт органической продукции может вырасти в сотни раз

Ria.ru, 3 апреля, 2018:  МОСКВА, 3 апр - РИА Новости. Экспорт органической продукции из России сейчас составляет лишь 20 миллионов долларов, но к 2030 году после принятия закона об органическом сельском хозяйстве он может вырасти в сотни раз - до 15 миллиардов долларов в год, заявил в интервью РИА Новости исполнительный директор Национального органического союза Олег Мироненко. Во вторник Госдума приняла в первом чтении законопроект, устанавливающий правовые основы регулирования отношений в сфере производства органической продукции. В частности, документ определяет, какая продукция имеет право называться органической, а также принципы ее производства, полномочия органов власти. Производители такой продукции смогут в добровольном порядке сертифицировать свое производство.   Читать далее...
На развитие ОЭЗ «Алабуга» выделят 3,5 млрд рублей за три года 

Kommersant.ru, 3 апреля, 2018:  Правительство России в течение трех лет выделит из федерального бюджета почти 3,5 млрд руб. на развитие индустриального парка ОЭЗ «Алабуга». Как говорится в распоряжении правительства, в 2018 году «Алабуга» получит около 1 млрд руб., в 2019-м - 1,4 млрд руб., в 2020-м - 1,1 млрд руб.
ОЭЗ «Алабуга» была создана в 2015 году в Елабужском районе Татарстана. Сейчас здесь более 50 резидентов, в том числе Ford Sollers, Castamonu, Rockwool, Armstrong.    Читать далее...
Россия возобновила тестовые поставки нефти в Узбекистан

Rns.online, 2 апреля, 2018: Экспорт российской нефти в Узбекистан в январе-марте 2018 года составил 36 тыс. тонн, говорится в материалах Центрального диспетчерского управления ТЭК (ЦДУ ТЭК).
В марте поставки составили 11,1 тыс. тонн.  Ранее Россия  прекратила  поставки нефти в Узбекистан, поставив в январе 24,9 тыс. тонн.  В 2017 году экспорт российской нефти в Узбекистан составил 68,2 тыс. тонн. В частности, в ноябре в Узбекистан было поставлено 30 тыс. тонн нефти, в декабре - 38,2 тыс. тонн. Официальный представитель «Транснефти» Игорь Демин  пояснял , что пока речь идет о тестовых поставках.  26 февраля текущего года вице-президент «Транснефти» Сергей Андронов сообщал, что в настоящее время идут активные переговоры между Казахстанскими партнерами и Узбекистаном по определению объемов транспортировки нефти.   Читать далее...
Российские геологи отмечают профессиональный праздник

Rosneft.ru, 2 апреля, 2018:  День геолога -  праздник специалистов, связанных с геологическими науками и специальностями -  52 раз отметили российские профессионалы этой отрасли. Праздник учрежден в 1966 году в честь  заслуг советских геологов в создании минерально-сырьевой базы страны. Первое воскресенье апреля - неслучайная дата, она связана с началом подготовки к летним работам и сборам в экспедиции.
Роснефть достигла заметных успехов в 2017 году в геологоразведке и сейсмической разведке. 155 разведочных скважин, 86% успешности - таковы итоги геологоразведки  и сейсмических работ Компании по итогам года. Открыто 162 новых залежи и 31 новое месторождение с суммарными запасами по категории АВ1С1+В2С2 233 миллиона тонн нефтяного эквивалента. Органический коэффициент замещения доказанных запасов углеводородов по классификации SEC  по итогам года составил 184% тонн н.э. (186% при расчете в б.н.э.).   Читать далее...
Экспорт зерна и угля служит драйвером роста погрузки, - ИПЕМ

Gudok.ru, 4 апреля, 2018:  Погрузка химических и минеральных удобрений ускоряется незначительно
Институт проблем естественных монополий проанализировал данные  по объему погрузки на сети ОАО «Российские железные дороги» и сопоставил их с данными Министерства энергетики России, Федеральной таможенной службы России и органов управления агропромышленного комплекса субъектов РФ. Согласно выводам руководителя отдела исследований грузовых перевозок ИПЕМа Александра Слободяника, существенный вклад в рост погрузки оказал экспорт угля и зерна.  По данным ОАО «РЖД», рост погрузки по итогам января - марта составил 3,5% по отношению к январю - марту 2017 года. «Рост наблюдается по большей части номенклатуры грузов и обеспечивается во многом за счет экспортных поставок», - сообщил Слободяник. По итогам марта темп погрузки каменного угля существенно ускорился (3,5% за январь - март против 1,1 в январе-феврале), но ниже, чем в 2017-м году: тогда по итогам 1 квартала фиксировался рост 9,3% к 1 кварталу 2016 года. Драйвером роста остается экспорт. Предприятия Сахалинской области продолжают наращивать объемы добычи бурого и каменного угля.   Читать далее...
КТК планирует в 2018 году транспортировать 13 млн тонн нефти с месторождения Кашаган

Rns.online, 4 апреля, 2018:  Каспийский трубопроводный консорциум (КТК) планирует транспортировать в 2018 году 13 млн тонн нефти с казахстанского месторождения Кашаган, заявил глава компании Николай Горбань.
«Планы перекачки КТК базируются на заявках грузоотправителей. Принятая на 2018 год заявка составляет 13 млн тонн», - передает слова Горбаня пресс-служба компании.
Глава консорциума сообщил, что согласно заявкам грузоотправителей, прогноз перекачки казахстанской нефти по нефтепроводу КТК на 2018 год составляет 60 млн тонн, нефти российских производителей - 7 млн тонн.   Читать далее...
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