|• WCMS 2015 ON POTENTIAL OF POLAND AND THE REGION
Total has found oil and gas at the Harir Block in the Kurdistan region of Iraq. Located 60km from the city of Erbil, the Jisik-1 discovery well on the Harir Block was drilled to a depth of 4,511m and encountered light oil and gas with condensates intervals in Jurassic and Triassic carbonate reservoirs.
Jisik is the second discovery in the Block, following on from the Mirawa-1 discovery, announced by Total on October 30, 2013.
'This success confirms Total’s exploration strategy in Iraq. The ongoing appraisal of the discoveries made on the Harir and Taza Blocks will allow us to identify options for development', commented Marc Blaizot, Senior Vice President, Exploration at Total.
Markets in perspective
|• GERMAN ECONOMY - STRONG AND WEAK POINTS
Germany's economy grew at its fastest rate in three years between January and March.
Strong investment and consumers spending more freely meant gross domestic product rose by a seasonally-adjusted 0.8 percent from the previous quarter. Year-on-year it expanded by 2.5 percent.
It was very much driven by domestic demand as export growth slowed.
And a fall in business confidence in the latest surveys by the Ifo research institution signalled the second quarter will not be so vigorous. Ifo economist Klaus Wohlrabe said they 'expect stable growth in the coming quarters'.
He pointed out that future government decisions on things like retirement age and the minimum wage 'will have a medium term effect on the German economy, which means we'll have to wait till next year to see that those effects are'.
|• GLOBAL INVESTORS SUSPICIOUS OF GCC COUNTRIES
A new report by The Economist Intelligence Unit has found that global investors are suspicious of putting their money into Gulf Cooperation Council countries, despite its member countries pursuing policies to attract investment and a rise in their global ease of doing business rankings.
Foreign investment has fallen in most of the six GCC states - Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates - since the global financial crisis in 2008-09, both in absolute terms and as a percentage of GDP. This is despite the introduction of policies to encourage foreign investment. 'The overall picture is one of uneven progress. On one level, investors are welcomed: the countries are open to foreign ownership and red tape on things like construction permits has been cut,' report editor Aviva Freudmann said.
|• WSE & GIME FOR THE POLISH CAPITAL MARKET
Joint Project of WSE and Gdańsk Institute for Market Economics for the Polish Capital Market. 'The European Financial Congress Project for Sustainable Development of Poland's Capital Market' is a joint initiative of Warsaw Stock Exchange and the Gdańsk Institute for Market Economics.
A summary of the first initiatives undertaken in order to develop a growth strategy for Poland's capital market has been published on the website of Warsaw Stock Exchange. 'The European Financial Congress Project for Sustainable Development of Poland's Capital Market' is an initiative of Warsaw Stock Exchange and the Gdańsk Institute for Market Economics - Gdańsk Academy of Banking, the European Financial Congress Project Co-ordinator.
|• CARL LARRY ON FAIR WEATHER FRIENDS: SAUDI - US RELATIONS
Before we get too far in this subject, I want all of the readers to understand that I see both sides to this argument and each has their own merits. The point I am making here is that in this modern era many things have changed quickly and too few were prepared for what has happened. Let's begin.
Recently we have seen some strong moves from Saudi Arabia. They first rejected a position on the UN Security Council and earlier this week they had some stern words for the US regarding our dealing with Syria and Iran. For the record, things have not been this terse between these two countries since 1973 and the oil embargo. In 1964 King Faisal warmed to the US and spare for that OPEC move on oil, the relations have been strong.
|• THE ECONOMIC FORUM IN KRYNICA
The Economic Forum in Krynica, organized regularly since 1991, is a recognized event in Central and Eastern Europe. Its mission is to foster favourable climate for development of political and economic cooperation between the European Union and neighbouring states. Each year the Forum is visited by more than 2500 guests – political, economic and social leaders – and 500 journalists from nearly 60 countries in Europe, Asia and America. It is the biggest event of this type in Central and Eastern Europe.
The following personalities have announced their participation in the Forum: Jiri Cienciala, Minister, Ministry of Trade and Industry, Czech Republic; Janusz Piechocinski, Deputy Prime Minister of Poland;
|• RUSSIA - TRADE WAR WITH BELARUS
In September, Russia will lower the supply of oil to Belarus by 400k ton, informed Mikhail Barkov, Vice President of the Russian Transneft. He justified this move with the need to replace the pipes at one of the segments of the Druzhba pipeline.
The representative of Transneft, the state concern managing all of the oil pipelines in the Russian Federation, did not provide a date when these works will be finished. In 2013, Russia has been supplying Belarusian refineries with 5.75
|• EGYPT'S ENERGY CRISIS - CONSPIRACY THEORIES
It is one of the first concrete changes observed since Mohammed Morsi’s ousting: power outages and queues at petrol stations seem to have miraculously disappeared. Speculation as to why is running rampant.
Anour Said, a taxi driver in Cairo, can’t contain his elation.
'Ever since Mohammed Morsi left, there’s petrol at the service stations,' he said as his family piles into the car alongside him. 'Since that very minute, things have been going well!'
Said’s wife nodded along as her husband continued: 'For a year, life was
|• OIL AND EGYPT CRISIS
Oil giants BP and BG Group have withdrawn about 160 expat staff from Egypt as violent clashes erupt across the country.
BP said it had withdrawn about 60 expat staff, from a usual contingent of about 100 in the country.
BG Group, which usually has about 150 expat staff and dependents in Egypt, said it had withdrawn about 100 people.
Both companies said all their staff were safe and accounted for and that their operations in the country continued unaffected. Sources suggested other oil companies were likely
|• NORD STREAM TO BUILD MORE PIPELINES
Monday’s open meeting in Visby marked the beginning of the Nord Stream consortium’s preparations toward receiving permission for the construction of the third and fourth Nord Stream pipelines. It is planned that the pipelines will be laid on the Baltic seabed by 2016.
‘The project’s scope, in its broadest assumptions, involves two lines, but it’s too early to say if it’s going to be one or two lines,’ said Nicklas Andersson, Project Manager for Sweden and Denmark, during the meeting in Visby on the Swedish
|• TUSK AND VAN ROMPUY ON THE EU BUDGET
Prime Minister Donald Tusk announced after the Wednesday meeting with the European Council President Herman Van Rompuy that they are both moderate optimists regarding the European Parliament's approval of the new long-term EU budget for 2014 2020.
The issues involved with the EU budget for 2014-20, which EU leaders agreed on at the beginning of February, were one of the main topics of the Warsaw meeting between the head of the Polish government and the president of the European
|• MAREK BELKA - POLAND AND THE EUROZONE
'Poland will consider joining the eurozone only when South European countries begin showing signs of economic growth'
- said Marek Belka, President of the National Bank of Poland (NBP), during the Tuesday conference in Doha.
'We continue to say that joining the eurozone is our strategic goal. We are waiting for a time when South European countries start showing signs of renewed growth. At that time, it will present a good opportunity to reevaluate our attitude towards the Euro' - said Belka.
|• RUSSIAN COMPANIES CHOOSE FOREIGN STOCK EXCHANGES
In the first half of the year, the half of the Russian stock trade was conducted on foreign
markets, the strongest one was London.
The data comes from the NAUFOR (The National
Association of Securities Market Participants). The information was gathered by
Russian news service 'Wiadomosti'. Last year, the share of the foreign stock
exchanges in the trade of the Russian securities was about 25%. During the
first half of the year, it abruptly started growing to 45%. According to the
report, until the end of the year, it will amount to 50%, generally, due to the
sales of 7% of the block of share owned by Sbierbank.
|• US ECONOMY TO ACCELERATE
The US economy expanded faster in the last quarter than in previous three
months and faster than it had been forecasted. The main reason was the
increase in consumers spending. Government spending was higher and there was
a progress in flat construction industry. The GDP rose by 2% at an annual
rate last quarter. Economists expected this increase to reach 1.8%, whereas
for the second quarter it was 1,3%
The revival of flat business improved the financial situation of Americans,
which may mean the maintaining of higher demand for luxurious goods like
cars. In September the annual sales rate was 14.9 million, which has been
the highest rate since March 2008.
|• GEORGE SOROS - GERMANY'S LEADING ROLE IN THE EURO CRISIS
‘The European Union may be destroyed by the terrible crisis of the single currency,’ claims George Soros, a billionaire who demands that Germany should take responsibility for the saving of Euro. The only alternative for the country with the best economy in Europe is to leave the Euroland.
Soros argues that the crisis is pushing the European Union into permanent depression and at our own request to boot. In his opinion there is a great risk that the Euro will destroy the European Union. This outcome can be avoided if Germany will help not only itself, but also other indebted countries, according to Soros who became famous and gained his fortune by betting against the pound sterling twenty years ago.
|• WHAT WILL 2011 BRING IN THE ECONOMY
US Congress blocks Bernanke's QE3
At the turn of the second half of 2011, Fed is put under pressure for allowing the US housing debacle and resulting bank bailout and public debt catastrophe. And the greatest banks are back in deep trouble as their troubled mortgage portfolios once again threaten their solvency. The Fed's Bernanke rallies the FOMC to indicate a strong new expansion of monetary policy to once more bail out the troubled banks and/or local governments. With favorable political and popular winds blowing, however, a Ron Paul-led challenge of the Fed's authority sees the Congress blocking the Fed's authority to expand its balance sheet, and sets up an eventual challenge of the Fed's dual employment/inflation mandate.