Jan .
No. 47

  USRCC Business Newsletter

Mark your calendar!

Luncheon with His Excellency 
Sergey I. Kislyak, Ambassador 
of the Russian Federation to the U.S.

Dear Friends,

The USRCC Ambassador Speaker Series with 
His Excellency, Sergey I. Kislyak scheduled for 
December 17, 2015, has been rescheduled to  February 11, 2016 

Sergey Ivanovich Kislyak was appointed Ambassador to the United States on September 16, 2008, having previously served as Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs. A career diplomat, Kislyak joined the Foreign Ministry of the Russian Federation/USSR in 1977. During his distinguished career, Kislyak headed the Foreign Ministry's Security and Disarmament Department (1995­-1998), and served simultaneously as the Ambassador to Belgium and as Russia's permanent representative to NATO.  Ambassador Kislyak first served in the United States as second secretary at the Russian Permanent Mission to the United Nations in New York (1981­-85) and, later, as first secretary and counselor Russian Embassy in Washington (1985­-89).

Save the date

February 11, 2016
Downtown Houston, TX
11:00 am VIP Reception/12:00 pm Luncheon






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
USRCC 2016 Membership

Renew your 2016 membership or join for the first time today!

                                                       For more information

Business Networking Happy Hour

The U.S.-Russia Chamber of Commerce invites you to kick off
the New Year With a business networking happy hour!

Thursday, January 21, 2016 from 6:00 - 8:00pm
5000 Westheimer Road #120 Houston, TX77056
Arcodoro Restaurant
Cost: FREE for members, $10 for non-members  
Complimentary appetizers will be provided. Happy Hour prices for drinks will be available.


 USRCC Trade Mission to Russia
 June 2016

With a population of more than 143 million people and rapidly growing infrastructure, Russia presents U.S. companies with promising opportunity. The U.S.-Russia Chamber of Commerce (USRCC) invites you to participate in a Trade mission to the  St. Petersburg International Economic Forum and Moscow. 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 or contact us

Member News

News.exxonmobil.com, January 4, 2016: IRVING, Texas--( BUSINESS WIRE)-- Exxon Mobil Corporation (NYSE:XOM) announced today that it will donate $100,000 to the American Red Cross to provide disaster relief assistance in response to the recent tornadoes in north Texas.
"Our thoughts are with all who have been impacted by the devastating tornadoes, and especially with the families who lost loved ones during the holiday season," said Rex W. Tillerson, chairman and chief executive officer. "We hope that this donation to the Red Cross will help our neighbors and friends in north Texas during this difficult time."   Read more...
The Week in Review 
Medvedev signs decree on establishing special economic zone in Moscow Region's Fryazino

Tass.ru, January 9, 2016: MOSCOW, January 9. /TASS/. Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev has signed a decree on establishing a special economic zone (SEZ) in Moscow Region's Fryazino, according to a document published on the official governmental website on Saturday. "A special economical technical-implemental Istok type zone is being established in Moscow Regoin's town of Fryazino with the aim of ensuring conditions for research, prototyping, manufacturing high-tech products in accordance with priority directions in the scientific and technical and innovation activities. This will contribute to developing and modernizing the defense industry, machine building, aerospace industry and several other spheres," the note to the document says. 
Highlights of Gaidar: Russia's top officials talk oil, spending and ruble

Themoscowtimes.com, January 14, 2016:  Russian top government officials and international experts gathered at the annual Gaidar Forum on Wednesday in Moscow to deliver their vision of the Russian economy's future.
Investment stimulation as key task for Russian economic growth

Tass.ru, January 14, 2016:  The international economic forum in Moscow diagnosed the Russian economy with "dependence on oil prices" and offered medical treatment measures to cure this disease by encouraging investment into the real sector, experts polled by TASS said on Thursday. The Gaidar forum named after former Russian premier and reformer of the domestic economy in the early 1990s Yegor Gaidar was held in Moscow on January 13-15. The forum annually brings together leading world scientists and politicians, bankers and business people to discuss the vectors of economic development.
Russia, China and the US need to work together in 2016

RussiaDirect.org, January 15, 2016:  The role of the great powers in the world order was among one of the most popular topics discussed by Russian and foreign experts and officials during the Gaidar Forum taking place Jan. 13-15 at the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration (RANEPA) in Moscow.      
Russia Sets Oil Production Record for 2015

Marinelink.com, January 12, 2016: Against the backdrop of a sharp drop in oil prices sharply increased their exports, Russia has set a new record for oil production in 2015.
This is a new record for oil production (including gas condensate) - 534 081 000 tons, which is 1.4% higher than in 2014, reports "Interfax" referring to the data of the Central Supervisory Control fuel and energy complex. The leader was the company "Bashneft". Others are "Gazprom Neft", "Surgutneftegaz" and reduced "Rosneft", "Lukoil" and "Slavneft".
According to the Ministry of Finance, in 2015, oil companies have earned on the devaluation of about 400 billion rubles, according to forecasts, in 2016 this figure fell to 300 billion rubles. The government took advantage of this and increased taxes on oil - it has been decided not to reduce export duties, as provided for by the tax maneuver.  Read more...
Russia Preparing to Launch Its Own Oil Market

Russiainsider.com, January 8, 2016: Russia is hoping to launch a futures market for its oil benchmark, the Urals blend.
According to a Reuters  report, Russia has for years wanted to establish a rival oil futures market to the Brent benchmark, but Russian President Vladimir Putin is seeking to finally turn it into a reality. The motivation stems from the fact that Russia is forced to sell its oil at a discount to the widely traded Brent benchmark based in the North Sea.
The discount for the Urals blend has averaged $0.84 per barrel in 2015, and $0.99 per barrel last year. But that is sharply down from the discount ten years ago, which often widened to as much as $5 to $6 per barrel. Nevertheless, the discount has started to grow again in recent weeks.
NOVATEK: Yarudeyskoye oil field reaches full production capacity

Oilvoice.com, January 12, 2016: OAO NOVATEK announced today that the Yarudeyskoye oil field has reached its planned production capacity of 9,700 tons of crude oil per day, which is equivalent to approximately 3.5 million tons per annum. Twenty-four production wells are currently in operation at the field with average flow rate exceeding 400 tons of crude oil per day per well.
Chairman of the Management Board of NOVATEK, Leonid V. Mikhelson stated:
'The Yarudeyskoye field was launched in December last year and it has ramped up to its full production capacity in a record short period of time as planned. The new volumes of crude oil produced at this field will positively impact the dynamics of our production in 2016 and will contribute substantially to our Free Cash Flow generation'.  Read more...
Russian Gas Exports To Europe Increased 8 Percent In 2015

Rferl.org, January 12, 2016: R ussian natural gas exports to Europe rose by nearly eight percent in 2015 despite tensions with the West over Ukraine, Russian gas giant Gazprom announced January 11. Aleksei Miller, head of the state-run firm, said it exported 159.4 billion cubic meters of gas to states that were not previously part of the Soviet Union -- mostly nations in Europe -- about 11.8 billion cubic meters more than 2014. Supplies to Germany rose by 17.1 percent to a record 45.3 billion cubic meters, he said, while deliveries to France were up by36.8 percent, to Italy by 12.6 percent, and Britain by 10.2 percent.  Read more...
NOVATEK reports preliminary operating information for the fourth quarter and full year 2015

Oilvoice.com, January 13, 2016: OAO NOVATEK reported today preliminary operating data for the fourth quarter and full year 2015. I n the fourth quarter 2015, NOVATEK's marketable production totaled 17.80 billion cubic meters (bcm) of natural gas and 2,559 thousand tons of liquids (gas condensate and crude oil). The Company's full year 2015 marketable production aggregated 67.91 bcm of natural gas and 9,094 thousand tons of liquids, resulting in an increase in natural gas production by 5.78 bcm, or by 9.3% as compared with 2014, and an increase in combined liquids production by 3,058 thousand tons, or by 50.7%.
NOVATEK processed 3,322 and 12,021 thousand tons of unstable gas condensate at the Purovsky Processing Plant, which represented a 59.6% and 82.1% increase as compared with the corresponding volumes in the fourth quarter and full year 2014, respectively.  Optional Link
Russia's Gazprom Won't Buy 49% of Vietnamese Refinery

Sputnik.com, January 11, 2016: Russian energy company Gazprom Neft has withdrawn from negotiations over the purchase of a 49-percent share in the Dung Quat refinery, as part of a deal signed with Vietnam Oil and Gas Corporation Petrovietnam, local media reported Monday.
MOSCOW (Sputnik) - Russian energy company Gazprom Neft has withdrawn from negotiations over the purchase of a 49-percent share in the Dung Quat refinery, as part of a deal signed with Vietnam Oil and Gas Corporation Petrovietnam, local media reported Monday.
According to the Tuoitre News newspaper, Gazprom Neft has already sent a notice considering the issue to Petrovietnam.  Read more...
Russia's Star City - where the conquest of space began

Rbth.com, January 11, 2016: The Soviet Union opened its first cosmonaut training center 56 years ago this month, and it now prepares to meet the goals of a new generation of space explorers. On January 11, 1960 the Commander-in-chief of the Soviet Air Force, Konstantin Vershinin, issued a secret decree on the creation of a military unit for space travel training. This was the beginning of the Cosmonaut Training Center.
The Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center (GCTC) celebrates its 56th anniversary this month. The first group of cosmonauts was prepared in less than one year. Any other timeframe would have been unacceptable. Soviet reconnaissance data on American astronaut training spurred Soviet specialists to outdo their rivals. Scientists, cosmonauts and instructors labored tirelessly to achieve their goal.  Read more...
Reports: Russia to Spend Less on International Space Station

Voanews.com, January 11, 2016: Russian media say the government plans to cut the amount of money it spends on the International Space Station during the next decade.
The Izvestiya daily reports the latest budget drafts for 2016-25 include about $3.3 billion in spending on the station, or about $330 million a year.  That is a 10 percent reduction from a previous draft in April.
Russia's space agency is one of five that works together to operate the station with a rotating crew of astronauts that conduct experiments.  Russia plays a key role in transporting the crew to and from the station, since the United States retired its fleet of vehicles to send astronauts into space.
Energy to-go: Lasers will refuel active drones and satellites

Rbth.com, December 28, 2015: Russian scientists are developing a method to recharge electric drones in the air by transferring energy via a laser beam. The technology can also be used in outer space to recharge satellites.
Blasters and laser canons look stunning in the epic battles of "Star Wars,'' but in reality a laser weapon is extremely ineffective and an ordinary mirror can provide almost 100 percent protection from such blasts. However, there is demand for lasers in certain economic sectors. For example, lasers transfer information over optical networks.  Read more...
Russia to finish building Indonesian railway in 2019

RT.com, January 11, 2016: "The project is so beneficial economically that we and the banks involved in its financing feel quite comfortable. All the investment will pay off within six years," said Russian Railways spokesman Denis Muratov. 
"Cargo will go by rail to a seaport from the vast areas of the island of Kalimantan, which is the largest in Indonesia and very rich in natural resources and minerals," he added.
Only the Indonesian islands of Java and Sumatra have previously had train services.
According to Muratov, in addition to the commercial benefits, the project will create more than 300,000 construction jobs, and more than 10,000 jobs in related industries. The Russian company will also give 200 scholarships to Indonesian students in 2016 and will increase that number to 350 in the future.    Read more...
DoubleTree By Hilton Debuts In Russia's Sport Capital

Globaltravelerusa.com, January 11, 2015: DoubleTree by  Hilton Kazan City Center opened its doors, growing the brand's Russian portfolio in one of the key locations for the 2018 FIFA World Cub. Located in the heart of Kazan, the property offers 98 guestrooms and suites as well as state-of-the-art meeting space capable of accommodating up to 60 guests.
Kazan is one of Russia's largest and most populous cities, known for its rich cultural heritage and location on the Volga, the longest river in Europe. Renowned for its sporting associations, Kazan will be a popular game city for the 2018 FIFA World Cup.  Read more...
Putin declares 2017 Year of Ecology in Russia

Rt.com, January 11, 2016: The Russian president has signed a decree making 2017 the Year of Ecology. The move is designed to attract public attention to environmental problems, maintain ecological diversity and protect the ecological security of the country.
Vladimir Putin also ordered the founding of a special commission for the task and appointed the head of presidential administration Sergey Ivanov chairman of this committee. He charged the Russian government with the job of coming up with a plan of major Year of Ecology events.
Since 2008 the president has dedicated each year to various spheres of life to boost public awareness.   Read more..
US-Russia Related News in Russian

Tmk-group.ru, 12 января, 2016: Лидер российской нефтяной отрасли ОАО НК "Роснефть" и Трубная Металлургическая Компания (ТМК), один из крупнейших мировых производителей труб для нефтегазовой отрасли, подписали меморандум о партнерстве при реализации программы импортозамещения трубной продукции для шельфовых проектов.
Целью меморандума является закрепление и дальнейшее развитие системы взаимодействия ОАО НК "Роснефть" и ПАО "ТМК" при освоении импортозамещающей трубной продукции, в том числе новых ее видов с высокими технико-экономическими характеристиками, соответствующих международным стандартам и требованиям, предъявляемым "Роснефтью".  Читать далее...
ЕВРАЗ вошел в тройку лучших компаний России по раскрытию данных для проекта CDP

Evraz.com, 29 декабря, 2015: ЕВРАЗ вновь принял участие в международном проекте по добровольной углеродной отчетности CDP (Carbon Disclosure Project). В этом году компания расширила количество данных об объемах выбросов парниковых газов, в частности, предоставила сравнительные показатели по годам, а также дала анализ причин изменения ряда параметров. По баллам раскрытия ЕВРАЗ занял третье место среди компаний, работающих в России. В 2014 году компания замкнула первую четверку рейтинга.
ЕВРАЗ планомерно снижает воздействие на окружающую среду в соответствии с экологической стратегией, принятой в 2012 году. Некоторые задачи выполнены досрочно: например, показатель переработки отходов уже превысил 100%, забор свежей воды снизился более чем на запланированные 15%.   Читать далее...
Астронавт НАСА: МКС демонстрирует прекрасное партнерство России и США

Ria.ru, 7 января, 2016: Космические достижения невозможны без международного партнерства, считает астронавт НАСА Джефф Уилльямс. Он высказался за конструктивное сотрудничество, а не конкуренцию стран в космосе.
ВАШИНГТОН, 7 янв - РИА Новости. Россия и США демонстрируют крепкое партнерство в программе МКС, которое продолжится и после создания США нового пилотируемого корабля, считает астронавт НАСА Джефф Уилльямс (Jeff Williams).
Он напомнил, что после сворачивания США программы "Спейс Шаттл", российская сторона взяла на себя задачу по доставке американских астронавтов на станцию. 
Читать далее...
USRCC Executive Partners


The USRCC is looking for new team members!

The USRCC is now looking for interns for its Houston, Chicago and  New York Office s.  To learn more about the position please click here or contact us directly at info@usrussiacc.org or call 713.429.4680
The information contained in this newsletter is provided for general information purposes only and does not constitute legal or other professional advice on any subject matter. USRCC does not accept any responsibility for any loss that may arise from reliance on information contained in this newsletter. The views and opinions expressed in this publication are those of the authors. They do not reflect the opinions or views of the USRCC or its members.  Links within this newsletter lead to other websites, including those operated and maintained by third parties. The linked sites are not part of the USRCC newsletter. USRCC includes these links solely as a convenience to the newsletter subscribers, and the presence of such links does not imply a responsibility for the linked site and its operator. USRCC cannot certify the accuracy of the material provided by the original  source .
The U.S.-Russia Chamber of Commerce (USRCC)  is  a 501(c)(6) no t for  profit  corporation with its headquarters  in Houston, Texas,  and offices in the Midwest and the Northeast. The USRCC  was established in 2009 to promote  trade and investment  between  the  Russia n Federation  and the U.S. A.