Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed a federal law on the ratification of an agreement between Russia and Kazakhstan on the use of reserves in the northern part of the Caspian Sea and the related protocol signed between the two countries on the sovereign right on the use of reserves. Russia and Kazakhstan signed an agreement on the delimitation of the sea bottom in the north Caspian Sea on July 6, 1998. The agreement was approved by the lower house of the Russian parliament on March 19, 2003 and by the upper house of March 26, 2003.
Currently, reserves of the northern Caspian region are estimated at 1-1.2bn tons of oil, 80 percent of which belongs to Kazakhstan and 20 percent will be developed by Russia.
Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmitry Kuleba believes that "Crimea has already become a" suitcase without a handle” for Russia