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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Business in Brief

Exxon Gas Seen for Russia

The government told ExxonMobil-led Sakhalin-1 group that it wanted it to focus on domestic gas supplies, the Industry and Energy Ministry said Thursday.

"The state representatives informed the investors' consortium about Russia's priority to supply gas from Sakhalin-1 to the domestic market," the ministry's statement said. (Reuters)

Gazprom Joins Exchange

LONDON -- Gazprom, the world's biggest natural gas provider, joined Germany's European Energy Exchange in July to trade day-ahead power as it expands in the region's electricity markets, the Leipzig-based exchange said Thursday in a monthly report.

Gazprom Marketing & Trading, the company's British trading subsidiary, is one of 175 member companies from 19 countries authorized to trade physical day-ahead power, the exchange said. (Bloomberg)

Exxon Steps in on Kashagan

CHICAGO -- ExxonMobil sent engineers to advise Eni on how to develop Kazakhstan's Kashagan field after costs more than doubled to $136 billion, Margaret Ross, a company spokeswoman, said Wednesday.

Exxon's technical advisers will use experience gained from working on other ice-plagued, offshore oil projects to assist Eni, operator of the project, Ross said. (Bloomberg)

E.On in Siberia Swap Talks

LONDON -- E.On, Germany's biggest utility, is negotiating with Gazprom about a swap agreement that would give the German company a stake in the Yuzhno-Russkoye gas field in western Siberia, The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday.

The swap agreement would give E.On a share in the gas field of 25 percent minus one share, CEO Wulf Bernotat said, the newspaper reported. (Bloomberg)

Antitrust Body on Gazprom

The Federal Anti-Monopoly Service has almost no powers to limit the actions of state-controlled Gazprom, Igor Artemyev, the watchdog's chief, told Kommersant in an interview published Thursday.

Gazprom wins 70 percent of the cases brought against it by the Federal Anti-Monopoly Service, Artemyev said, the newspaper reported. The watchdog loses fewer than 20 percent of cases on average against other companies, he said. (Bloomberg)

Investors Eye TGK-2 Stake

Power generator TGK-2 said three firms, Gazprom, metals giant Norilsk and trader Transnafta, are considering buying strategic stakes in it.

"Norilsk has officially declared its interest. ... We are talking to them all the time. Gazprom is also periodically showing interest. There was also an official letter from Transnafta," general director Andrei Vagner told reporters. (Reuters)

Reserves Rise to $417.3Bln

Foreign currency and gold reserves rose to a record $417.3 billion in the week ended July 27, the Central Bank said Thursday.

Russia increased its reserves by $4.2 billion from $413.1 billion the previous week, the Central Bank said. The reserves gained $1.9 billion the previous week, the bank said. (Bloomberg)

Inprom Posts $1.2M Profit

Inprom, a metals trader planning an initial public offering, swung to profit last year after expanding in its home market, the company said in a statement Thursday.

Net income was $1.2 million, versus a loss of 1.2 million, the company said. Sales advanced 60 percent to $446.6 million from $279.5 million, in results calculated to international financial reporting standards. (Bloomberg)

Refinery to Shut in August

Independent midsized refinery Nizhnekamsk will fully halt processing in August due to planned maintenance, a source at the refinery said Thursday.

The plant, located in Tatarstan, processes around 150,000 barrels per day, refining crude for local midsized oil producer Tatneft and buying some volumes on the free market from other firms. (Reuters)

Petkim Sale Gets Approval

ISTANBUL -- Turkey's government will approve the sale of chemicals maker Petkim Petrokimya Holding to a group of Russian and Kazakh companies and complete the transaction as early as next month, Turkish newspaper Vatan said Thursday.

The government will ignore criticism that the buyers, a group named TransCentralAsia that includes Troika Dialog, did not provide enough information about their activities, Vatan said, citing unidentified people close to the government. TransCentral won an auction last month for 51 percent of Petkim with a bid of $2.05 billion. (Bloomberg)

Harvest at 30 Million Tons

Russia has harvested 30 million tons of grain so far this year, 5.1 million more than a year ago, due to the early start of the campaign in some regions, the Agriculture Ministry said Thursday.

Grains had been harvested from 10.7 million hectares, or from 24 percent of the targeted area. The average yield was 2.81 tons per hectare. The ministry did not provide a comparison for yields from the same period in 2006. (Reuters)

36.6 Reports Q1 Losses

The country's largest drugstore company, 36.6, on Thursday reported a first-quarter loss after profitability weakened and costs rose.

The net loss of $5.7 million compares with a year-earlier profit of $291,000, the company said Thursday on its web site. Sales jumped 87 percent to $185.1 million as 36.6 added outlets and higher incomes boosted spending on medicines and personal-care products. (Bloomberg)

Vostok Borrows $1Bln

Vostok Gas, a Swedish company whose biggest asset is Gazprom stock, borrowed $1 billion from Deutsche Bank to increase its stake in the natural gas exporter, managing director Per Brilioth said in a statement on the company's web site Thursday.

The two-year loan enables Vostok Gas "to add to the company's Gazprom position, while taking actions to further maximize shareholder value," Brilioth said. (Bloomberg)

For the Record

Bioton Wostok, a Russian unit of Poland's largest biotechnology company Bioton, signed an agreement to sell $5.1 million worth of the diabetic drug Gensulin and antibiotics to Russia by December, the company said Wednesday. (Bloomberg)

Russian Railways, the country's rail monopoly, will sell 15 percent of its First Cargo unit in an initial public offering next year, Russian Railways CEO Vladimir Yakunin said Thursday, Interfax reported. (Bloomberg)