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State regulation of the oil and gas sector in 2015, prospects for 2016

State regulation of the oil and gas sector in 2015, prospects for 2016

The traditional series of NESF reports is concluded with the final analysis of main events in the Russian oil and gas sector in 2015.

Oil prices kept falling, which affected the sector negatively and made the government again raise taxes on FES players.

Amid the growing state budget deficit and decreasing export revenues the Russian finance ministry again paid its fiscal attention to oil and gas companies. Meanwhile, the oil industry set another post-Soviet production record. The question is whether we will see recurrence of the situation observed in the late 1980s when a record high oil output was followed by its collapse.

The report elaborates on the following issues:

  • Production results of the year

    • The analysis of the situation at Russia’s leading oil and gas companies
    • Results of production of oil, natural gas and oil products
    • Stagnation in the oil industry as reflection of investment problems; decline in the natural gas output as a result of marketing difficulties
  • The influence of sanctions and low prices on prospects of the sector development

    • Termination of the Arctic direction
    • The situation around offshore development
    • Problems with development of tight reserves in Western Siberia
    • Chinese and Indian companies in eastern projects – a new hope?
    • Saving on the future – reduction in investments in prospecting
  • Tax battles

    • Results of the tax maneuver
    • The finance ministry is looking for the devaluation margin
    • Repressive decisions at the end of the year: freezing the oil export duty rate and preserving the planned rise in the oil production tax; advance in the natural gas and condensate production taxes
    • The finance ministry is torpedoing the sector’s transfer to the financial result taxation
  • Activities of state regulators

    • The role of relevant ministries.
    • Main administrative battles: gas market reforms, offshore development, regulation of the oil services segment
  • Export policies

    • The turn towards the East continues
  • Prospects of developments

Contents of the report:

Introduction 3
Chapter 1. 2015 PRODUCTION RESULTS 5
Chapter 2. STRUGGLE FOR THE TAX REGIME 25
Chapter 3. RUSSIA’S OIL AND GAS SECTOR IN THE CHANGING WORLD CONJUNCTURE 45
Chapter 4. TRANSFORMATION OF EXPORT STRATEGY 58
Chapter 5. STATE REGULATION OF THE OIL AND GAS SECTOR 67
FORECAST OF DEVELOPMENTS 80
Date of release: January 18, 2016

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Analytical series “The Fuel and Energy Complex of Russia”:

New OPEC+ Deal and Future of Oil Business in Russia
Gazprom on the background of external and internal challenges
Regulation of Oil and Gas Sector in 2019 and Prospects for 2020
Fiscal Policy on Oil and Gas Sector: Revised as Often as Wikipedia
The tax system in the oil and gas sector continues to undergo radical changes. The beginning of 2019 saw the introduction of a new tax regime: additional income tax. That experiment was supposed to start migration of the oil industry to an innovative principle of taxation: on profit, not revenue. It seemed that a new main road was found. In the same year, however, the Finance Ministry launched an overt offensive against AIT. The fear of loss of government revenue now is more powerful than the threat of causing oil production to collapse in the medium term because of a tax system that does not stimulate investment. The Finance Ministry would strongly prefer to speed up the tax manoeuvre completion that earns the state budget additional money. Oil and gas companies respond to this with individual lobbying, attempting to wangle special treatment for their projects.
Ukrainian Gas Hub: Climax at Hand
The “zero hour” comes in less than a month: the contracts for gas transit through Ukraine and for supplying Russian gas to the country terminate at 10 am on 1 January. Meanwhile, Gazprom and Naftogaz are very far from looking for a mutually acceptable solution. The entire European gas business is watching intently the negotiations between Russia and Ukraine. Everyone is waiting for a new “gas war”: the January 2009 events proved to be a serious test both to European consumers and to Gazprom as a supplier. Is there still a chance of agreement? If there is not, will Gazprom cope with its obligations to deliver gas to Europe? Is Russia bluffing as it assures that the new infrastructure and gas in underground storage facilities will enable it to get by without Ukrainian transit even as soon as this winter? What will happen to Ukraine itself at the beginning of 2020?

All reports for: 2015 , 14 , 13 , 12 , 11 , 10 , 09 , 08 , 07

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