Feb .
No. 52

  USRCC Business Newsletter
6th Annual Ambassador Speaker Series- February 11, 2016

The  6th Annual Ambassador Speaker Series Luncheon provided sponsors and guests with the unique opportunity to meet with and interact with His Excellency, Sergey I. Kislyak, Ambassador of the Russian Federation to the United States. Ambassador Kislyak provided guests with a direct update about US-Russia relations, sanctions, the economy, challenges and opportunities.  More than 150 guests were in attendance and came prepared with candid questions for His Excellency. 

Special thanks to our sponsors for making this event so successful. ExxonMobil, LUKOIL, Shell and TMK IPSCO were gold sponsors; Chevron and Gazprom were silver sponsors. 

To view the full photo album 
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 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

TMK-group.com,  February 8, 2016: TMK, one of the world's leading producers of tubular products for the oil and gas industry, has shipped a batch of vacuum insulated tubing (VIT) to Gazprom Dobycha Yamburg, which develops the Yamburgskoye and Zapolyarnoye oil and gas condensate fields in the Yamal-Nenets Autonomous Area.
The shipment included 2,849 linear meters of low-temperature N80-grade 89 mm VIT with 6.45 mm walls and 60 mm VIT with 4.83 mm walls complete with ТМК UP™ FMT premium threaded connections. The tubes were produced at TMK's Sinarsky Pipe Plant. This type and size of VIT has never been supplied to Gazprom Dobycha Yamburg before.  Read more...
The Week in Review 
Russia to consider role for non-state pension fund in privatisation plan - Putin

Reuters.com, February 15, 2015: Feb 15 President Vladimir Putin said on Monday it was worth considering the idea of Russia's non-state pension fund taking part in planned privatisation sell-offs, RIA news agency quoted him as saying at a meeting with the country's business lobby.
"Today's market conditions ... may turn out to be advantageous for (pension) funds - they can invest at a lower price and have growth prospects," RIA quoted Putin as telling the Russian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs.
"In general, this idea is undoubtedly worth paying attention to," Putin said. (Reporting by Jack Stubbs; Writing by Dmitry Solovyov).   Read more...

Russia Sees Oil Output Slump in Worst Case Amid OPEC Talks

Bloomberg.com, February 18, 2016: Russian oil production may slump 14 percent in the next five to 10 years under a worst-case scenario prepared by the Energy Ministry.
Crude output may drop to 460 million metric tons (9.2 million barrels a day) by 2020-2025 from 534 million tons last year, before starting to show slight growth, the Energy Ministry's press service said by e-mail Thursday, in response to a report in Vedomosti newspaper. The worst case, prepared for the nation's long-term energy strategy, envisages oil prices remaining at about $31 to $33 a barrel in 2016-2017 with a rebound to $42 in 2020, it said.
Rosneft and Pietro Barbaro to jointly enter global shipping markets

Oilvoice.com, February 11, 2016: Rosneft and Pietro Barbaro S.p.A. signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the scope of creating a Joint Venture (JV) in the area of international shipping.
The signed document envisages the performance by working groups of the companies of a joint analysis of potential formats of the JV's organization. The parties highly value the prospects of the implementation of the projects, taking into consideration the prominent synergetic effect of such an alliance in the area of international shipping of oil and oil products: Rosneft is one of the global leaders in the area of hydrocarbon production and refining, whilst Pietro Barbaro is a long-standing Rosneft partner and a leading company in the area of tanker shipping, holding an own fleet and possessing extensive capabilities in the area of hydrocarbon logistics and storage. Read more...
Saudi Arabia, Russia to Freeze Oil Output Near Record Levels

Bloomberg.com, February 16, 2016: Saudi Arabia and Russia agreed to freeze oil output at near-record levels, the first coordinated move by the world's two largest producers to counter a slump that has pummeled economies, markets and companies.
While the deal is preliminary and doesn't include Iran, it's the first significant cooperation between OPEC and non-OPEC producers in 15 years and Saudi Arabia said it's open to further action. Oil pared gains after the accord was announced, signaling traders see no immediate end to the global supply glut.
The deal to fix production at January levels, which includes Qatar and Venezuela, is the "beginning of a process" that could require "other steps to stabilize and improve the market," Saudi Oil Minister Ali Al-Naimi said in Doha Tuesday after the talks with Russian Energy Minster Alexander Novak. Qatar and Venezuela also agreed to participate, he said.   Read more...
Gazprom taking comprehensive cost optimization measures

Oilvoice.com, February 17, 2016: The Gazprom Board of Directors took notice of the information about the cost optimization (reduction) trends across Gazprom Group in 2016.
It was highlighted that Gazprom pursued the consistent policy of improving the cost management practices, reducing operating costs and maximizing the value for money ratio. In an unstable economic environment this work is highly relevant, therefore Gazprom is using all possible means and exploring new opportunities for further cost optimization.
The cost optimization strategy is focused around several key areas: generation of the Investment Program and the Budget, development and execution of the cost reduction program, implementation of cost optimization plans by types of activity and procurement of goods, works, and services.  Read more...
Russia Hopes to Keep in Touch With Global Oil Producers

Sputnik.com, February 17, 2016: Russia hopes to keep in touch with other oil exporters to share opinions on energy market developments, Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Wednesday.
MOSCOW (Sputnik) - Global oil prices experienced temporary respite on Tuesday following the news that Russian, Saudi, Qatari and Venezuelan energy ministers were ready to  freeze average monthly oil output this year at the January 2016 level if other oil exporters agree to follow suit.
Markets remained skeptical of the possible production freeze amid persistent oversupply. Azerbaijan has already announced that it will abstain from curbing its oil production.  Read more...
VimpelCom: We're ready to acknoledge FCPA violations and pay panalties

Fcpablog.com, February 18, 2016: Telecoms company VimpelCom said in an earnings release Wednesday that it has discussed terms of prospective settlements with the SEC, DOJ, and Dutch prosecutors and would would acknowledge "certain violations" of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and Dutch laws and pay fines and disgorgements to settle the offenses.
In November last year, Amsterdam-based VimpelCom reserved $900 million for settlements with U.S. and Dutch authorities. Prosecutors are investigating VimpelCom's business in Uzbekistan and dealings with an offshore company linked to the daughter of the Uzbek president.   Read more...
EU hits Russia with definitive anti-dumping duty over imports of ammonium nitrate

Vieuws.eu, February 19, 2016: The European Commission imposed, on 18 February, a definitive anti-dumping duty on imports of ammonium nitrate originating in Russia. A decision to this end follows an expiry review and states that imports of ammonium nitrate produced by the Russian company - KCKK Branch of Joint Stock Company United Chemical Company Uralchem in Kirovo-Chepetsk - to the EU would be subject to anti-dumping duty of €47.7 per tonne.
The duty imposed for 5 years applies to ammonium nitrate other than in aqueous solutions, and to mixtures of ammonium nitrate with calcium carbonate or other inorganic non-fertilising substances, with a nitrogen content exceeding 28 % by weight.  Read more...

VimpelCom reaches $795 million resolution with U.S., Dutch authorities

Fcpablog.com, February 18, 2016: Amsterdam-based VimpelCom Limited, the world's sixth-largest telecommunications company, and its wholly owned Uzbek subsidiary, Unitel LLC, entered into resolutions with the DOJ, SEC, and Dutch authorities Thursday for paying more than $114 million in bribes to a government official in Uzbekistan between 2006 and 2012.
The settlement requires VimpelCom to pay a $230.1 million criminal penalty to the DOJ, $167.5 million in disgorgement and pre-judgment interest to the SEC, and $397.5 million to Dutch prosecutors.    Read more...
Reach for the Stars: Russian cosmonauts launched Space Race

Masslive.com, February 17, 2016: When the Soviets successfully launched the world's first artificial satellite, Sputnik 1, on Oct. 4, 1957, a stunned America took notice. In response, NASA was formed, and in 1961, President John F. Kennedy made space flight a national priority, with the goal of putting a man on the moon by the end of the decade. The Space Race was on!
I recently had the good fortune to attend a special exhibition, "Cosmonauts, Birth of the Space Age," at London's Science Museum. The term "cosmonauts" refers to Russians traveling in space, and the exhibition detailed their achievements and the technological advances that made these possible.  Read more...
Chelyabinsk Superbolide Mystery Continues Three Years Later

Spaceref.com, February 15, 2016: On 2013 February 15 the approach of asteroid (367943) Duende to our planet was being closely monitored by both the public and the scientific community worldwide when suddenly a superbolide entered the atmosphere above the region of Chelyabinsk in Russia.
Three years and hundreds of published scientific studies later, we are still looking for the origin of such an unexpected visitor, which caused damage to hundreds of buildings and injuries to nearly 1,500 people. Finding the precise value of its speed as it touched the top of the atmosphere appears to be the key to determine the orbit of the parent body of the Chelyabinsk superbolide.
Thailand looking to buy more Russian helicopters

Rt.com, February 18, 2016: The Thai military wants to purchase more Russian Mil Mi-17V5 transport helicopters in addition to the six aircraft the country has already acquired, according to a source in the Russian defense industry quoted by Sputnik.
The aircraft (NATO code name "Hip") is manufactured by Russian helicopters' subsidiary in Kazan and is the latest version of the Mi-17 line of helicopters.
Last September the company said it was trying to gain market share in the Asia-Pacific region by boosting after-sales and support services with local partners.  Read more...
Putin: Trade with Hungary to return to steady growth

Rbth.com, February 17, 2016: Russian President Vladimir Putin has no doubt that trade between Russia and Hungary will return to previous levels.
"I am certain that over time we will be able to put our bilateral trade back into the steady growth trajectory, as is consistent with our shared interests," Putin told a press conference after talks with Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban on Feb. 17.
Russian-Hungarian trade relations are "traditionally close and mutually advantageous," he said.
"Russia is among Hungary's three main export markets outside the European Union," the president said.  Read more...
US-Russia Related News in Russian

Новости членов Палаты
Иностранцы о том, что на Руси изменить, чтобы стало

Tvtrain.ru, 11 февраля 2016: В то время, пока руководство Центробанка встречается с банкирами и продолжает искать способы изменить курс рубля и ход истории, мы решили, что как раз самое время обратиться к историческому опыту. Советоваться с иностранцами в период экономического кризиса и общей апатии рекомендовал ещё Пётр Великий. 
Что у нас было, что у нас будет и что бы такое сделать, чтобы на Руси стало жить хорошо? Ответить на эти вопросы Марии Макеевой помогли гости в студии:
- Кристофер Ван Рит, американец, управляющий директор девелоперской компании «Радиус Групп» (в России 20 лет).
- Том Блэквелл, британец, генеральный директор консалтинговой компании EM (в России 17 лет)    Читать далее...
Новости недели
РФ обновит годовой рекорд добычи нефти при ее заморозке на уровне января

Interfax.ru, 16 fevralya...Москва. 16 февраля. INTERFAX.RU - Январь 2016 года, который Россия и несколько стран ОПЕК договорились взять за ориентир в рамках договоренностей о заморозке уровня добычи нефти, был очень удачным для российской нефтянки. Если поддерживать производство на январском уровне, Россия обновит свой прошлогодний рекорд по добыче.
Согласно данным ЦДУ ТЭК, добыча нефти и газового конденсата в январе составила 46,006 млн тонн, увеличившись на 1,5% к первому месяцу 2015 года. Это больше, чем в любой из месяцев прошлого года (максимум был в декабре - 45,69 млн тонн).   Optional Link
Россия может снизить добычу нефти на 14% к 2020 году

Vedomosti.ru, 18 февраля, 2016: Минэнерго предусмотрело стресс-сценарий в энергостратегии России до 2035 г., следует из презентации министра Александра Новака на правительственной комиссии по ТЭКу 17 февраля (копия документа есть у «Ведомостей»). Оценка негативных рисков - обязательное требование к стратегии, пояснил представитель министерства.
Этот вариант предполагает, что будут замедляться темпы роста экономики Китая и других стран Азии, расти поставки нефти дешевых ближневосточных проектов, сланцевой нефти и газа из США, а также снижаться издержки за счет девальвации валют нефтедобывающих стран и соответствующий рост добычи углеводородов.   Читать далее...
Правительство придумало три способа приватизации без иностранцев

Rbc.ru, February 9, 2016: Правительство рассчитывает привлечь в бюджет около 1 трлн руб. за счет «большой приватизации». Для этого доли в крупнейших компаниях могут предложить менеджменту и негосударственным пенсионным фондам
РБК узнал, какие три механизма приватизации крупнейших госкомпаний обсуждаются сейчас в правительстве: выпуск облигаций, конвертируемых в акции приватизируемых компаний (это уже подтвердил министр финансов Антон Силуанов на минувших выходных), привлечение денег негосударственных пенсионных фондов и выкуп доли в компаниях собственным менеджментом (management buyout).  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.