A 935-mile pipeline to the northern port of Murmansk will enable Russia to sell to the USA 10% of its oil imports by the year 2007, increasing Russia’s dimension as a swing producer of oil and putting it into the super league of producers, along with the OPEC countries.
While it is true that there are some months in which Russia already produces more oil than Saudi Arabia, the pipeline and the subsequent increase in sales it will guarantee will bolster production on a sustained and sustainable basis.
As Russia seeks to maximise revenue from its vast mineral resources, at the same time pressure will be applied to the OPEC countries, giving Washington added leverage in its strained diplomatic relations with the Arab world.
The deal is seen as a vote of confidence in Vladimir Putin’s Russia by the United States of America and the income will provide Moscow with much-needed cash.
Timothy BANCROFT-HINCHEY PRAVDA.Ru