Rosneft is exhausting its mineral wealth

The state company is against giving the competitors an access to the shelf. 
"Rosneft" has entered into an open struggle against the liberalization of access to the Russian shelf, accusing the Ministry of Natural Resources in lobbying the interests of LUKOIL. According to "Kommersant", the president of state-owned companies, Igor Sechin began to defend his point of view in March, with no less concerned about the risk of its exploration of the state monopolization "Rosgeologiya", which also follows from the Ministry of Natural Resources offers. Ministry supports Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Khloponin, the Ministry of Energy and Ministry of Economy. But Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, according to sources, "b", the position is closer to Igor Sechin, and the decision will in any case, Vladimir Putin.

The next day, after the Ministry of Natural Resources officially presented plans for the liberalization of access to the Russian shelf, "Rosneft" for the first time openly issued a sharp criticism of the idea. "According to the selection criteria clearly takes one company -. LUKOIL tolerance of a private company on the shelf has the right to discuss, but it is precisely no liberalization is not" - said the "Rosneft" Mikhail Leontiev spokesman. I do not like the state-owned companies and other element beforedix MEP - strengthening the position of the state as "Rosgeologiya".

Minister Sergey Donskoy in response assured that "lobbying for the interests of all domestic companies in the preparation of documents on the shelf" (quoted by "Interfax"). He stressed that the access of private investors - is the consolidated position of all the departments, which will discuss the government. In particular, the idea has already been officially approved the Ministry of Energy and Ministry of Economy. Sources "Kommersant", adding that offers actively supports Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Khloponin.

Ministry of Environment wants to expand access to the shelf through the creation of consortia, and not necessarily with the participation of state-owned companies. The state will be able to agree on the composition of consortia, a prerequisite will be the availability of the participants of the technological and financial capacity and experience to develop the shelf. Now, according to the amendments to the law "On Subsoil" from 2008, which largely lobbied the current president of "Rosneft", and then Deputy Prime Minister Igor Sechin, to work on the Russian shelf can only own oil company and "Gazprom". Discussionto change the rules has been going on for several years, last time it was aggravated in early 2013, also on the initiative of the Ministry of Natural Resources. Then the "Rosneft" and "Gazprom" managed to repel the attack, but a serious impact on the solution of the question in favor of state-owned companies had a head of gas monopoly Alexey Miller. Today, sources say "b", "Gazprom" is neutral.

The current round of the fight for shelf began in February during Vladimir Putin's meeting with Vagit Alekperov, the co-owner and head of LUKoil (working in the Caspian and Baltic seas under licenses issued prior to the changes in the legislation). The President instructed to study the idea of ​​liberalization that eventually supported his assistant Andrei Belousov (see. "Kommersant" on March 26). According to officials, "Rosneft" and "Gazprom", 80% that control the shelf, can not cope with its development and to attract private companies will improve the situation.

But, said a source "b" in the middle of March to the struggle involved and Igor Sechin. In his letter to the president, he called incorrect data Andrei Belousov, stressing that "Roeoil "and" Gazprom "control only 60% of the shelf, the pace of exploration (GE)" satisfactory ", while the private companies," for example LUKOIL ", the volume of exploration" is not carried out, and will not be very likely. "" usually, private companies do not imply the investment strategy for the long period, the implementation of such projects is possible only through the sale of the share or the whole business to foreign investors ", - says the president of" Rosneft "(her partner on the shelf were ExxonMobil, Eni and Statoil, but iz for the work of the sanctions, in fact, stopped). Igor Sechin, argues that even in 2012 the state-owned company offers partnership LUKOIL, TNK-BP and "Surgutneftegaz", but no one agreed.

No less outraged the head of "Rosneft" the idea of ​​the Ministry of Environment give additional powers to the state "Rosgeologiya", which Igor Sechin has devoted a separate letter to the president. Companies plan to grant the right together with the Russian and foreign partner obtain licenses for exploration and production, if on the basis of exploration open field. Moreover, "Posgeologiya "may be the only performer of the state order for exploration, not only offshore. According to Igor Sechin, it is, in fact, talking about" monopolization of the subsoil use right. "As a result," Rosgeologiya "can get a preferential right to the shelf in front of state companies and to areas on land in front of all the other participants in the market, although "does not have the experience in the offshore and can not itself carry out the work." "Such proposals are introduced into the practice of subsoil new subject of legal relations, which has both the authority organ of state power and economic entity with exclusive rights" - says Igor Sechin, Deputy General Director of "Rosgeologiya" Anton Sergeev told "Kommersant" that the company has "no plans, and is not going to be engaged in the mining business.".

Sources "Kommersant" disagree about what question to "Rosneft" is more painful - access to LUKOIL Shelf or a sharp increase positions "Rosgeologiya". One of the interlocutors "Kommersant" said that "LUKOIL drags along with the state holding, which is hookedAlexander Khloponin ported. "But another source of" Kommersant "says that" Rosneft "more concerned about LUKOIL (there yesterday declined to comment).

According to Mr. Don said, until mid-May proposals on liberalization will be discussed pravkomissiey for Nature and Environment, headed by Alexander Khloponin, the matter may be reviewed and on the FEC pravkomissiey Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich. The solution, say sources, "b", will Vladimir Putin personally, although his spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that "in this case all the same the last word for the government." According to official statements, the officials largely supported liberalization. But two sources of "Kommersant" they say in the government, that the Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev and Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich "in favor of retaining the current rules of operation" (or their representatives do not comment on the situation).

Platts Editorial Director in London Stuart Elliott believes that "if the sanctions regime has restricted access" Rosneft "in the advanced Western technology to develop offshoredeposits, the Russian government will sooner or later have to open them and for other companies, including foreign ones. "But, says the expert, due to low oil prices," the interest of foreign private companies is questionable. "No less important factor that will play a key role in decision-making by investors, in his opinion, is "lack of confidence in the feasibility of large-scale investment in the Russian oil and gas industry against the background of international sanctions against Russia."