Earth Shift Report 3:
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PUTIN & RUSSIAN OLIGARCHS
THE CRUCIAL DIFFERENCE BETWEEN RUSSIAN & UKRAINE OLIGARCHS
Russia went through the oligarch infestation and wars in the 1990s. I worked at Smith Barney as financial consultant at the time and I managed some of the Russian oligarch assets; therefore, I am quite familiar with the Russian oligarch class. I described some of the oligarchs and their modus operandi in my two novels, GOLD TRAIN and THE EARTH SHIFTER.
Yeltsin was under the oligarch influence. Being a complete child when it came to economy and finance, he had no idea that the oligarchs, together with their Western handlers, were leading the country into abyss.
Although it is not the focus of this report, it must be noted that many, although not all, Russian oligarchs (and of course, Ukrainian too) served as agents for the Western shadow interests. The name of the Rothschilds is usually mentioned in relation to Khodorkovsky. Some acted on behalf of Western conglomerates, such as Exxon, Shell and others. That said, I strongly suspect that some of the former Russian oligarchs weren’t fronting Western oligarchs at all. In fact, they were direct assets of the CIA, Mossad or MI6. One such example is Jewish-Russian oligarch Boris Berezovsky, who had Yeltsin’s ear. Throughout the ’90s there was no bigger name and bigger oligarch in Russia than Boris Berezovsky, until Putin got on his case.
After that Beresovsky quickly fled to London. He was an agent of MI6 and CIA, and possibly of Mossad as well. Berezovsky’s story is very remarkable. A couple of years ago, he wrote a secret letter to Putin, begging for pardon and for the possibility of returning back home to Russia. According to many witnesses, in his later years, he missed his homeland terribly, always asking for treats to be brought to him from Russia and greedily listening to the Russian news. The letter was sent with a trusted messenger and Putin got it. Berezovsky could tell a lot of things, including how and by whom the wholesale looting of Russia was organized in the ‘90s. Shortly after, Berezovsky suddenly ‘hung’ himself in his London mansion.
This wasn’t the original story. Originally, the UK authorities were supposed to blame Putin and Russians for Berezovsky’s death, just as it happened a few years prior with ex-KGB Litvinenko. Russian authorities got the wind of what was to come and quickly produced Berezovsky’s letter to Putin, in which he was asking for pardon and return home in exchange for spilling the beans on his handlers. Then, the hastily put together ‘self-hanging’ theory emerged, despite strange bruises on Berezovsky’s neck.
After Putin came to power in 2000, the status quo in Russia changed. It shifted gradually, but Putin let everyone know that he would not allow the wholesale looting of Russia any more. Putin slowly but surely restructured tax laws, making oligarchs and foreign oil interests pay taxes – something that, amazingly, Yeltsin and his sold-out advisors were unable to figure out for 8 years in power!
Those who didn’t want to play ball went to jail, like Khodorkovsky. Others, like Berezovsky, fled the country, taking their assets with them. The Western howling was deafening for years, accusing Russia of the roll-back of democracy and a return to dictatorship. Of course by then I left Smith Barney and generally US corporate world, having understood what was happening and having been disgusted with all that I discovered.
Russian oligarchs were losing power and influence in Russia throughout 2000s. Khodorkovsky was in jail on official charges of money laundering and tax evasion (all true), but in reality, for trying to execute a coup d’état and for attempting to sell the country to the US. (Incidentally, I write about that in THE EARTH SHIFTER; oligarch Konukovksy in the book is modeled after Khodorkovsky). The last oligarch who attempted to obtain the power in the country officially, via presidential elections, was Mikhail Prokhorov in 2012. One of Russia’s richest men, he ran against Putin. Prokhorov got a surprise almost 8%. Putin got almost 64%.
After winning, Putin invited all former presidential candidates who ran against him, aka, leaders of opposition parties, to his Kremlin office and consulted with them on various matters, making sure their voices were heard. This was basically the end of Prokhorov’s political ambitions. I think Prokhorov isn’t dumb. Hopefully, he understood he had no chance against such man.
I usually say that the class of oligarchs ceased to exist in Russia in 2013, but it may have happened as early as 2012, after Prokhorov’s failed bid. Presently, Russia has plenty of rich people and lots of business people. The business class is quite active and there are lots of those who have made their fortunes by building their business from scratch through their own wit and hard work, after the roaring ’90s.
Prokhorov isn’t one of them. He is the owner of Norilsk Nickel, which was the giant Soviet-built enterprise and the world’s largest producer of nickel and palladium. Norilsk Nickel was one of the victims of the ’90s privatization, having been given away literally for free. Prokhorov also owns gold-producing companies. All that he acquired on the cheap during the 1990s wholesale robbery of the country, when prized Soviet properties were sold for pennies. That said, Prokhorov has proven to be a very good manager, and responsible owner. He pays his taxes and conducts his business transparently.
Here is Putin’s plan that is now bearing fruit: oligarchs who acquired their properties that way, but who proved later that they managed them well, cared about their workers, paid taxes, didn’t launder money, conducted honest business and didn’t try to undermine existing authorities, could continue owning what they had, as long as they invested into the country.
I foresee additional change coming soon. Some are proposing a one-time, retroactive tax on assets acquired during the ‘90s for an unfairly low price. These former oligarchs may be required to pay a fee of varying amount.
I like this idea. My advice to Russians to do it this way:
This retroactive tax must be calculated based on a variety of factors, including the fair and prevailing global asset value at the time of purchase, how much the asset has been developed since, how much out-of-pocket money has been invested to develop such asset, and how much more profitable a plant or company may have become. If a person invested a lot of their own money, hired additional employees and expanded the company, they may not owe anything. Many Russian business people expanded and modernized their Soviet inheritance and made it pay.
If they just sat on their acquisition, doing nothing with it and simply milking the original Soviet asset, they should owe a lot, with interest. Some may have to sell their company or give it back to the Russian State, to repay what they owe. I can tell you that this proposed new tax could do wonders for the Russian business class investing in their companies to avoid paying tax, therefore boosting Russian productivity and GDP! I hope this tax is enacted soon.
Oligarch Roman Abramovich, Governor of Chukotka
Roman Abramovich is a great example of how Putin got some of the oligarchs to invest back into the State. Abramovich is one of those who got filthy rich on the unfair ’90s privatization. He was a Berezovsky crony. But later, there was a falling out. Not only that, Abramovich apparently grabbed some of Berezovsky’s assets when the latter fell out of favor, for which Berezovsky sued Abramovich in London court.
One thing Abramovich did much better than Berezovsky was to work with others and achieve a compromise. Putin told him: fine, you can keep your assets, which you manage pretty well, but under one condition. You become the governor of Chukotka. Historically, in Russia wealthy people gave back to the country by serving the State and helping locals.
The Chukotka peninsula is one of the easternmost Russian territories, which has been neglected for the past 25 years. There is no ready access to oil or gas there, with a lot of pristine wilderness. The population is rather small and climate is very harsh, therefore developing infrastructure is very expensive. Consequently, there was no interest in developing it, like for instance, on the nearby Island of Sakhalin.
If you ask me, it’s actually a great idea to preserve some pristine corners of the globe, unspoiled by humans. But locals do demand modern conveniences.
Abramovich had to demonstrate his worth as a governor to earn his ‘pardon,’ so to speak. During his tenure Abramovich invested his own money into building roads, renovating the city and building hospitals, schools and new companies in order to give locals steady employment. There was a situation when Abramovich had to pay regional salaries out of pocket and he had to shell out to fix housing too. Basically, the region was fixed up using his own money. After several years as Chukotka governor, locals started talking about naming one of their streets, or even a town, after Abramovich as a thank you. This was what Putin wanted to hear – Abramovich did a good job; he earned his pardon.
When Medvedev became president, Abramovich appealed to him to be ‘let go.’ Medvedev at first said he was still needed for the second term as governor since he was doing so well, but I think after some consultations with Putin, he did let him go. After that, Abramovich moved to London, preserving his money and the good will of the Russian government.
This is a very good example of how Putin put the oligarchs, their business skills and their money to work for the good of the State and society. He didn’t fight with them, he didn’t take their assets and money away (except for Khodorkovsky and a few others, who committed direct treason). These drastic measures would have been disruptive for the economy and would have created an even bigger backlash against Russia in the West.
Instead, Putin made the oligarchs serve the country they once robbed.
Another example of how he did it was Sochi. Putin compelled practically all biggest Russian oligarchs to invest in the Sochi 2014 Winter Games: from building hotels and sports venues to financing high-speed railroad, trains, new port and train station. This is who paid for a chunk of the $50bln invested. As is well-known, most Olympics don’t pay for themselves since many venues don’t find enough usage after the Olympics are over. If Sochi doesn’t pay for itself, a lot of it will be the former oligarchs’ loss. If it does – good for them, they will make profit.
Ukraine oligarchs are very different. They never invested in anything, just demanding more and more eggs from the golden goose they stole from the people. As a result, they killed that golden goose.
Certainly, in the case of Russia we also have a president who isn’t only intelligent and balanced, but who is also a wise leader of a sovereign country, who cares a lot for the well-being of his people and land. It is no accident that US, France and some other countries, have a movement, “Putin for President.” They want to borrow Putin for their respective countries. It is also no accident that Putin has recently topped the TIME 100 Readers’ Poll, leaving any competition far behind. More here: Vladimir Putin Steals the Show in TIME 100 Readers’ Poll.
Meanwhile, in Ukraine we have a regime that consists of foreign marionettes, bandits and fascists. At best they are incompetent, at worst – simply insane. For the past 24 years, Ukraine has been under oligarch/raider/mafia control. In addition to that, it is now under the control of the violent and greedy fascist gangs. As if all that wasn’t enough, Ukraine is firmly under foreign management.
Tragically, Ukraine has no possibility of resolving any oligarch-related problems under such circumstances. The euro-maidan slogans were ‘away with oligarchs.’ Instead, they got one of the biggest oligarchs of them all – Poroshenko – as their president.
Ukraine oligarchs finally understood that they were also losing from the war with Donbass and standoff with Russia. At least some of the oligarchs, whose assets are threatened and whose power is dwindling, wouldn’t mind the end of war in Donbass. They may be even trying to pressure Poroshenko to keep peace and agree to federalization. Poroshenko may even be interested in that himself.
But there are two other forces in Ukraine: 1. ukro-nazis and their armed battalions that are ready to go to Kiev and start another maidan; 2. US, whose interest is to keep as much turmoil and disorder in Ukraine as possible for as long as possible.
It is a further tragedy of Ukraine that oligarchs themselves have created the monster, inviting and encouraging these dark forces. Karma is a bitch – oligarchs can’t win against those two forces. Therefore, however you look at it, the fights between all factions will continue until… all these ugly and dark forces are booted out of Ukraine by a popular uprising.
The rich Soviet inheritance isn’t the only thing that has ended in Ukraine. For years, the oligarchs and the rest of Ukrainians lived off leaching the Russian transit gas to the EU, which they stole from the pipes. Ukraine also lived better than economically predetermined because of the heavy discount on Russian gas it received for years as another left over vestige of the Soviet system, when Russians often robbed themselves to give to the republics. But all of it ended with the advent of euro-maidan and war on all fronts against Russia. Gas price is up and Russian loans no more. As a result, Ukraine is facing total collapse.
Ukraine in this state can only be unified if there is war. During active war in Donbass the oligarchs all seemed united in their hatred against Donbass and Russia. The shift in priorities occurred once the shaky peace process was established. Russia insisted on peace negotiations because Donbass was in desperate need of reprieve for its citizens. But apart from that, the brilliance of the Russian insistence on peace process was that the moment peace started spiders started devouring each other.
In truth though, the country is so filled with energy of anger, confusion and confrontation that this destructive energy has to be directed against someone. If it’s not directed against Donbass, it has to be directed against other forces. The problem is that with very weak central government and almost non-existed legal system, including inadequate private property protection laws, it becomes extremely destructive.
Oligarchs are used to easy money they stole during the ’90s privatization robbery and through later re-distributions of property. Now, with the dying economy, they are staring into abyss. They are losing assets and their cash flow is catastrophically drying up. Bankruptcy is looming.”
“Pictures – top to bottom, left to right:
1. No comment: Putin as Bad-Good Santa for naughty and nice children, Mikhail Khodorkovsky and Roman Abramovich.
2. Khodorkovsky during trial.
3. Putin receiving Abramovich – notice their body language!
4. Roman Abramovich as governor of Chukotka, with indigenous Chukchas.
5. Abramovich being congratulated by David Beckham for Russia winning World Cup 2018 (Abramovich was an active part of the Russian bid – another way Putin used oligarch influence for good).
6. Swimming in excess money, Russian oligarchs jumped on ownership of prestigious Western sports clubs. For example, Mikhail Prokhorov bought New York basketball club Brooklyn Nets. Roman Abramovich is the owner of the British football club Chelsea. From left to right: Chelsea and Abramovich celebrate winning a trophy; anti-Abramovich protest by ukro-nazis in the UK; the oligarch scandal – Boris Berezovsky sues Abramovich in the UK court with similar accusations as ukro-nazis to the left. Berezovsky accused Abramovich in taking his part of the joint business and in being Putin’s lackey, to put it simply. UK court didn’t find substantiated evidence confirming Berezovsky’s complaint. Shortly after, Berezovsky secretly wrote to Putin asking for pardon in exchange for juicy intel against his US/UK bosses. After that, Berezovsky ‘committed suicide’ in his London home. This unlikely verdict was given by London police despite suspicious bruises on his neck.”
There are more pictures inside the report. Some new, fresh ones have just been added!
For the full picture on Russian and Ukraine oligarchs, Putin, Poroshenko, Kolomoysky, and what wizard behind the curtain is really pulling the strings, read
Earth Shift Report 3 OLIGARCH WARS
Or go to all EARTH SHIFT REPORTS!
Video version of this article is now available!
(LadaRayLive 15 episode)
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On video’s image: Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks during a session of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum 2015 (SPIEF 2015) in St. Petersburg, Russia, June 19, 2015
For those who prefer to read, below is the written version
(the video above contains additional relevant maps and pics)
A Latvian politician and member of Europarliament has told me that he recalls how several years ago any session of the EU-Russia Europarliament Commission would be packed because of the overwhelming interest in doing business with Russia. Everyone understood: that’s where the opportunity was. At the same time, sessions of the US-EU Commission would barely have a few people attending. Those days several years ago now seem to the EU like another lifetime. Events in Ukraine and anti-Russian sanctions changed perceptions and put a visible wedge between Russia and EU – a setback used by the US to continue pushing EU to accept the increase in its military presence, its LNG shale gas and its secret Transatlantic Trade Agreement.
I know what US apologists both sides of the Atlantic will say: it’s the EU people who demand our increased military presence, shale gas and Transatlantic Trade Agreement. I suppose the EU people also demand that NSA wiretap their presidents and business elites, along with every citizen. I suppose the EU people also demand to be robbed blind.
Seemingly, US can celebrate a victory. Seemingly, they have achieved their goals. However, per my 2014 predictions, this victory will be short-lived, followed by a huge reversal.
The top event of last week was the St. Petersburg Economic Forum, yet what happened there went almost unnoticed in the manipulated Western media, busy covering up the new French NSA spying scandal with a fresh dollop of Russia-bashing. According to the Russian Foreign Ministry, the moment the news that NSA spied on three French presidents broke up, French papers filled with anti-Russian propaganda, blaming Russia for not observing the Minsk peace agreements. Similar thing happened in Germany, where the public is still reeling from last year’s massive NSA spying scandal. Obviously, the news filled with bad Russia and bad Putin, their convenient boogeyman, are meant to distract from the real news.
It should now be clear beyond the shadow of a doubt who controls ALL of the world’s media, except some news outlets in Russia, China and a few other countries. The fact that French and German media immediately jumped to protect their real Transatlantic employer once the scandal against such employer broke out – speaks volumes. The prime directive of the Western MSM is to divert the sheeple’s attention and pull the wool over their eyes every time their puppeteer is in trouble.
What happened in St. Pete was sensational, and therefore, it should have been the stuff of front pages. Instead, it was shyly relegated to the back pages, or avoided altogether.
But at the same time as US and Brussels continued selling their naive populace the stale story of Russia’s isolation – and Russian aggression – a virtual fight over who would become a bigger and better partner for Russian gas transit was taking place in St. Petersburg.
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In light of what’s happening in Greece, what’s especially interesting is this: Greek PM Tsipras neglected his scheduled meeting with EU leaders, in which he was supposed to negotiate his country’s crucial pre-default debt restructuring. Instead, he chose to come to St. Pete, where he signed a $2 bln joint venture for building the Greek leg of Turkish Stream to southeastern Europe.
Nord Stream-2: Analysis and Prediction
Less noticed and very under-the-wraps was another mega-deal: potentially even bigger than Turkish Stream. During the St. Petersburg Forum Germany and Russia agreed to build Nord Stream-2, to deliver gas across the bottom of the Baltic Sea directly to Germany, for further distribution throughout the EU. Nord Stream-1 consisted of two branches and cost 8.5 bln euro. Nord Stream-2 will add two more branches, for a total of four, and will cost 9.9 bln euro.
Nord Stream – Rusian gas goes directly to Germany via Baltic Sea
The new pipeline will go on top of the existing Nord Stream. This means that, due to the same footprint, Nord Stream-2 won’t need to go through a very grueling and lengthy approval process with Euro Commission and deal with objections by all countries bordering the Baltic Sea. With German discipline and profit motivation, expect Nord Stream-2 to be built in record time.
Therefore, while Germany is making all kinds of public anti-Russian noises, it’s quietly making serious strides to fortify and expand business with Russia. However, make no mistake! Russian gas transit to the EU is as much in the realm of politics and geopolitics, as in the realm of business. I will illustrate that below.
Nord Stream-2 capacity will rival the current Ukraine pipeline capacity. Russia already announced that the aging Ukraine pipeline will be eventually phased out due to the political instability and inflexible position of the Ukraine government. In short, Russia won’t be held hostage to the whims of Kiev. Nord Stream-2 agreement means Germany is making a decisive move to take away gas transit business from Ukraine.
This led some to speculate that Germany facilitated the 2014 coup in Kiev on purpose: to create an impossible situation for the Russian gas transit through Ukraine, thus making Russian gas transit business its own. I won’t categorically agree or disagree with this opinion, and here is why. There is some logic to it. Germany and other strong EU economies were always worried about the insecure Ukraine gas route. Taking steps to ensure one’s country’s energy security are natural and expected. Still, at least in part, Germany is not initiating but rather responding to various threats, acting to secure gas supply route and quantities for itself and its close allies in northern and central Europe. Germany, of all countries, is able to use its considerable European pull to secure a fast construction of the new pipeline – and it’s doing it.
Is Germany making big anti-Russian noises to appease and fool the US, while behind the scenes making deals with Russia? Here is what I see: I do think Germany is continuing clumsy attempts to sit on two chairs, playing both Russia and US, in the hopes of wiggling its way out of unfavorable agreements with the US, while keeping the door to Russian business semi-open with one foot. It’s some fancy acrobatics, to be sure, and it does look desperate. Germany and German allies – in other words, the strongest northern and central EU economies – see the writing on the wall and they don’t want to be caught in the upcoming Ukraine/US fallout. They are also rushing to secure Russian gas agreements while they still can.
Turkish Stream Prediction
It’ll be somewhat harder for Turkey, Greece and Italy to push the Turkish Stream construction through. Their pull isn’t as hefty as Germany’s and the pressure on them will be significant both from the US and EU.
But my confident prediction is this: unlike the botched South Stream project, which relied on the weak key transiter, Bulgaria, the Turkish Stream project will be accomplished successfully. The reason is that Turkey is much stronger than Bulgaria as a key transiter. Greece (key transiter 2) will be fine as well, as long as it remains steadfast. This will be a tall order, but Greeks are fighters and they can do it.
The Myth of the United EU and NATO: Geopolitical and Economic Rivalries Explosion
What many are missing is that Germany and Greece are acting here as direct rivals. Germany wants to keep all of Russian gas under its control, in order to then distribute it to all of the EU, thus keeping its control over Eurozone. Meantime, for Greece their participation in the Turkish Stream and association with Russia is a terrific negotiation ploy and additional leverage in their fight for independence against the EU, IMF and German dictate. To top it off, Russian partnership is a lifesaver for the fledgling Greek economy.
As such, Germany sees Greek revolt as a challenge to their EU power and hegemony. From this it’s easily understood that Germany and Brussels would try to undermine and sabotage Greece and other countries who are participating in Turkish Stream.
US will also try to sabotage it for both geopolitical reasons and for their own economic reasons. US wants to sell its shale gas to the EU. Its dream is to push Russia out as the primary gas supplier to the EU, taking Russia’s place and, therefore, binding the EU to itself not just militarily and economically, but also energy-wise.
Consequently, the fight between Greece and EU/Germany we are presently observing is much more than a fight for Greece’s debt restructuring. It’s also beyond the projected Grexit. It’s about distribution of Russian gas and future control of European energy security.
When Bulgaria’s puppet government foolishly refused to allow South Stream through its territory, loosing potential billions in future profits, Turkish Stream was born. It will go through the bottom of the Black Sea, using Russian waters, a small stretch of international waters and Turkish waters. Then, it will go through the northwestern-most part of Turkish territory, with branch-outs to supply large parts of Turkey with Russian gas. Why is it important that it only goes through the northwestern part of Turkey? This is the quietest and most prosperous part of Turkey. The east and south are restive and volatile, with Kurdish and Syria-related unrest.
But Turkey isn’t a member of the EU. Turkish Stream will get to the border with Greece at which point Greece will take over the pipeline for further distribution to other EU countries.
Russian President Vladimir Putin and Turkish President Erdogan sign the Turkish Stream deal
As we see, Greece/Turkey and Germany are now in direct competition for the exceedingly lucrative Russian gas venture. Therefore, the fight between them is also the fight for future control and profits.
Putin’s Gambit: the all-around win for Russia
We spoke on many prior occasions about how Putin works. Sometimes, it appears he doesn’t respond directly to various threats and adversarial actions by the US, Kiev junta and EU, instead, he takes his time and acts asymmetrically, when he is ready. And every time Russia acts, it’s an unexpected and pretty crushing move. This is why they call Putin the Grand Chess Master.
Nord Stream-2 partner is the No. 1 German energy giant E.On, as well as Shell (Dutch-British) and other German companies, such as OMV and Wintershall. It is understood that such companies wouldn’t commit to Nord Stream-2 without securing a serious backing of the German government. It is also a given that Nord Stream-2 will be pushed through by Germany in record time. In fact, it will be built faster than Turkish Stream.
This puts fire under Turkey. The thing is that after the Turkish Stream deal was signed by Erdogan, he imagined himself in the driver seat. He began looking for more preferences, playing on the Crimean Tartar controversy and delaying the approval for the engineering survey of the pipeline route. Immediately after the Nord Stream-2 deal was signed, the Italian engineering survey vessel, which was sitting in the Bulgarian port of Burgas waiting for Turkey’s permission to enter the Black Sea for six months, was finally allowed to start work. Erdogan also changed his tack on a number of other issues.
Recall what I once said before: Erdogan and Turkey are attempting to play their own game in the Middle East and southeastern Europe, not always successfully and not always nicely. However, on balance Turkey is still a strong and convenient ally for the Turkish Stream and various other projects, for a variety of reasons – from geopolitical, to psychological and economic. For one, Erdogan is pissed at the US, EU and NATO, and two, he wants gasification of his country, whose archaic coal-based system is in desperate need of replacement with clean modern energy.
Therefore, Nord Stream-2 and Turkish Stream are in direct competition. This is excellent, as it will finally balance the situation with Russian gas supply to the EU, which has become precariously imbalanced after Ukraine, and sometimes Belarus, began playing blackmail games. The result was that Ukraine endangered EU’s energy security and Russia’s energy livelihood. And that’s just not done.
There is an ‘opinion’ of ‘the couch potato experts’ that Russia won’t have enough gas to fill both pipelines.
However, having reserve capacity on hand is actually the point! Two pipelines will be filled with gas as needed, reserve capacity used as necessary. The constant competition between the two will not allow either party to attempt what Ukraine has done for years: blackmail Russia either economically or geopolitically, while keeping EU gas customers hostage.
The realisation of the plan of the competing pipelines will put an end to the American Dream of cutting Russian gas from Europe. Will US try to stop the construction? Undoubtedly. My prediction: because of well-chosen allies, and unlike with South Stream, they will fail.
The deadline for the complete turn off of the Ukraine gas transit system is 2019. Until then, EU and Germany will have to continue paying for Ukrainian gas in order to ensure Ukraine doesn’t turn off the vent.
Alexander Medvedev, Gasprom Deputy Chairman said: “After the current gas transit agreement with Ukraine expires, there will be no new contract, nor extension of the existing contract, under any circumstances. Due to the economic, political, investment and technological risks, there will be no more Ukraine gas transit, not even if sun and moon switch places in the sky.”
China: Deeper reason for the stampede to secure Russian gas
In addition to the Turkish Stream and Nord Stream rivalry, for the EU and Germany there is another, more important consideration.
Germany must act now, before Russian gas gets redirected to China and Asia via the Power of Siberia pipeline. Let’s recall my 2014 predictions: once it happens, it will be too late and EU will begin experiencing gas shortages. Shortages can be avoided if Europe acts now to secure multi-year gas commitments.
Therefore, Russia is building a fully balanced and diversified Eurasian gas supply system, and Chinese counterweight plays a big part in it.
Nord Stream-2 and Turkish Stream will eventually take all gas transit business away from Ukraine. It means that regardless of how the power in Ukraine changes in the following 2-3 years (and it will), Ukraine will only be able to buy gas for itself – at market prices. It won’t be able to profit from the exclusive gas transiter status.
Poor, naive Ukrainians; while they were yelling and screaming on Kiev maidan that Russia was bad, shrewd Europeans nodded politely and did what they had to do to provide for their energy security. This eventually will render Ukraine unnecessary for either US or EU, and, as I predicted, it will simply be abandoned. Too bad the cost will be so great for the people… I wonder, will Ukrainians ever learn?
This effectively means that US will lose interest in Ukraine and drop it like a hot potato. Recall my timeline for the mega-changes in Ukraine: 2016-18.
US LNG Shale Gas
But what about the US and its LNG shale gas, you ask? Judging by the St. Petersburg deals, Europeans aren’t holding their breath for it.
Let’s be clear: US shale gas is yet another bubble. This, awfully harmful to the environment bubble, will burst, just like so many before it.
Where is China?
What went completely unnoticed in the media was the presence of China at the St. Petersburg Economic Forum. Too bad, because this is actually the country everyone should have been watching in the first place. Chinese press wrote after the event that China and Russia fortified their future-oriented, long-term strategic partnership. Russia is the key partner in China’s New Silk Road project, which will unite in one economic space China, Russia/Eurasian Union, most of Asia and EU.
For more listen to my interview: Putin’s Disappearance and the New Silk Road ~ The Plane Truth
I spoke many times about the need to reunify all of Eurasia. This is one continent. The artificial division on Europe and Asia has to come to an end. Through trade and energy, this is what Russia and China are working on.
While Germany, Turkey and Greece trip all over themselves to be first to sign gas transit agreements with Russia, China is continuing its patient long-term expansion. Unlike the expansions of the US and EU, it targets to cooperatively unite, not divide. Patience is one thing Chinese have lots of. Pragmatic wisdom and vision is another.
Europeans could learn a lot from both Russians and Chinese.
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