Russia Macro Monthly Report for September 2017: How long will the positive momentum last?

Please find Russia Macro monthly report for September 2017, prepared by Chris Weafer, Senior Partner at Macro-Advisory Ltd from Moscow. Short summary of the report:

weafer

How long will the positive momentum last?

Recovery strengthens. Rosstat reported 1H GDP growth of 1.5% and Q2 at 2.7%. The question is whether 2Q was a one-off or a new trend.

VEB disagrees with EconMin optimism. VEB’s Chief Economist publicly disagrees with the optimism from the Economy Minister and expects growth to shrink to 1.4% in the second half of this year.

Agriculture expected to pick up. The indicators are that Russia will have another record grain harvest this year and will reclaim the position of the world’s largest wheat exporter.

Confidence numbers suggest recovery has peaked. Official business confidence numbers fell from -1 to -2 in July. The PMI manufacturing index fell, indicating there is still growth, but at a slower rate.

Inflation continues to fall. Year-on-year inflation fell to 3.3% at the end of August, from 4.4% at the end of June. Food price deflation was the main driver as food inflation dropped to 2.3% YoY.

CBR cut the key rate to 8.5%. The decline in inflation allowed the CBR to make a 50-bps cut to the key rate at the 15 September policy meeting. The CBR indicated that it is likely to cut further during the next two quarters.

Rosneft is looking for asset swaps in Norway, according to Halfdan Millang, CEO of RN Nordic Oil, Rosneft's subsidiary in Norway

As Reuters reports, Russia’s oil company Rosneft is looking for assets on the Norwegian continental shelf to swap with its assets in Russia, according to Halfdan Millang, chief executive of Rosneft’s subsidiary in Norway, member of the Board of Directors of the NRCC.

Halfdan Millang, said the company was bidding for acreage in Norway’s 24th licensing round, but also looking at “inorganic” growth opportunities.

“Primarily we are looking at assets swaps. Not necessarily only in the Barents Sea, but on the whole Norwegian shelf,” Millang told Reuters. He also mentioned that RN Nordic Oil was also in the process of pre-qualifying for operatorship on the Norwegian shelf.

Please read the original version of the article here.

The news was also mentioned in Norwegian media. Please see the article in Norwegian here

 

 

Macro Advisory Eurasia- Russia Consulting 

Eurasian Union, September 2017 

Steady Progress. Progress in building the trade and legislative structures within the EaEU continues on a slow but steady course.This is as expected given the experience of how long it took the EU.

Gradual trade integration. The best KPI for EaEU progress is the share of intra-EaU for each member, although this is not perfect. Here there is also steady, but slow, growth.

No immediate expansion. There is no sign of any potential new members joining the five-country union over the medium term. The relationship with Uzbekistan is growing and the 30-million people country is expected to join eventually. Moldova gained observer status, but domestic politics will stop it joining. A free trade agreement with Iran should be signed this year.

Belt and Road will make a difference. This expanding rail network means that transport links across and in/out of the region are improving and trade is becoming easier and cheaper. That may be a power driver for growth in some areas in the future. Chinese companies are more interested in investing in rail infrastructure and in other projects along the transport corridors.

Please read the full version of the article here.

 

Rosneft and Statoil agree to move joint development of the North-Komsomolskoye field into the next phase

According to the Rosneft official website, RN-Exploration and Production LLC, Rosneft subsidiary and Statoil Russia AS, Statoil ASA subsidiary, signed the shareholders and operating agreement at the Eastern Economic Forum. The document is signed with regards to SevKomNeftegaz LLC, an enterprise that will serve as a basis for a future North -Komsomolskoye joint field development.

The Document was signed in elaboration of agreements on the cooperation within the North-Komsomolskoye Field reached by Rosneft and Statoil in 2013. In accordance with the document signed Statoil is planning to acquire 33,33% in SevKomNeftegaz LLC. The agreement also approves the principles of the asset management at the development stage.

Please read the full and original version of the article here.

 

 

 

Russia Sanctions Guide by Chris Weafer

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What difference have sanctions made and, is that about to change?

Economy has adjusted to new conditions. The economic impact of the sanctions applied against Russia by the US, EU and other states in 2014 has been relatively slight. The reason is because the government was forced, due to the combination of sanctions, counter-sanctions and lower oil revenues, to address problems in a real way and not just “kick the can down the road” as before. The economy has now adjusted to (pre-August 2017) sanctions and lower oil revenues and is on course to grow by 1.4% this year.

NRCC Networking Meeting in Oslo - 29 August 2017

On 29 August 2017, the NRCC Networking Meeting took place in the facilities of the Norwegian Shipowners’ Association, Oslo. About 55 participants took part in the meeting.

Mr Jarle Forbord, NRCC Managing Director, opened the meeting by welcoming all the participants. Then Ms Anu Fredrikson, Director of the Arctic Economic Council Secretariat, held a presentation about the Arctic Economic Council business to business activities with focus on Russia. 

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Ms Anu Fredrikson, Director, Arctic Economic Council Secretariat, Tromsø
 
The next speaker, Mr Yevgeniy Tregubenko, CEO of RT Group, Moscow, updated participants on main developments in Russian tax and corporate laws.
 
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Mr Yevgeniy Tregubenko, CEO, RT Group, Moscow

Working visit to the Møre Maritime Cluster in Ålesund on 21-23 August 2017

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The working visit to the Møre Maritime Cluster in Ålesund was organised on 21- 23 August 2017.

The delegation was presented by H.E. Ambassador of the Russian Federation to the Kingdom of Norway, Teimuraz Ramishvili, Mr Igor Kozhedub, Attaché, Embassy of Russia in Norway, Mr Timur Chekanov, Attaché, Embassy of Russia in Norway, Mr Alexander Anikin, Trade Representative, Trade Representation of Russia in Norway, Mr Alexander Lizogub, Head Expert, Trade Representation of Russia in Norway, Mr Sergey Alekseev, Head of Arctic Engineering Center, Krylov State Research Center, Ms Liv Monica Stubholt, Chair of the NRCC Board, Mr Jarle Forbord, NRCC Managing Director and Mr Rune Methi, NRCC Senior Project Manager.

Regarding the program, on the first day the delegation visited Optimar AS presented by Mr Asbjørn Solevågseide and Skipsteknisk presented by Mr Hans Ove Holmøy and Ms Inge Bertil Straume. The evening continued with a reception and dinner at the Atlanterhavsparken aquarium.

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