Economy

Caspian games

caspianRussian politician Andrei Zhirinovsky is all mouth, so it would not normally have caused a stir when he suggested earlier this year that Russia should simply annex the parts of neighboring Kazakhstan that have a large Russian population. But the ultra-nationalist leader of the Liberal Democratic Party actually frightened the Kazakhs, because there is a bigger game going on.

 

The Five Worst Climate Villains Among World Leaders

auscanAustralian Prime Minister Tony Abbott and Canadian Premier Stephen have just landed near the bottom of a ranking of the world's worst climate villains. The 2014 Climate Change Performance Index, published by Germanwatch and the Climate Action Network, called out Abbott and Harper for aggressively dismantling and blocking clean energy policies in their countries. They came in at 57th and 58th in a list of 61 names, and have some illustrious company at the bottom. Let's take a look at the worst five.

‘The Secret World of Oil’, by Ken Silverstein

 

Ken Silverstein's 'The Secret World of Oil' explores a murky business on which the west depends. Oil is the world's most important traded commodity. It powers our cars and drives our industry. And surging energy demand in developing countries from China to Brazil means its significance will only grow.
But how much do we really know about the business? Some of its public faces are familiar – the Gulf potentates, the bosses of BP and Exxon­Mobil, energy ministers in Europe and the US

 

 

 

How a Giant Kazakh Oil Project Went Awry

 

kashagandDeveloped by Western Oil Companies, Giant Project Off Kazakhstan Is Years Late, More Than $30 Billion Over Budget. Kazakh workers were recuperating from the frigid temperatures of the Caspian Sea over cups of tea when their Italian supervisor interrupted their break, demanding they return to work.  The workers restrained the supervisor— a manager working for Eni ENI.MI +0.17% SpA, a company building a giant oil development here—and put a plastic bag over his head. He fled, packed his bags and left Kazakhstan.

 

Ukraine crisis heaping more risk onto tricky Kazakh devaluation

On February 11, Kazakhstan's central bank devalued the national currency, the tenge, by 19 percent against the US dollar. It said the gradual decrease of the US Federal Reserve's stimulus program had led to a capital outflow from developing countries to developed ones and the central bank was not able to maintain the exchange rate of the tenge by selling dollars.

 

 

Crisis puts sovereign funds under pressure to keep assets liquid

 

nan nimbCaught in an emerging market storm, some resource-rich states may keep more windfall income in liquid assets, ready to aid their economies, rather than locked up in strategic investment for future generations.

 

 

 

 

Kazakh President Sees ‘Serious’ Oil at Blighted Kashagan in 2014

 

Kazakhstan President Nursultan Nazarbayev said he expects "serious" output from the nation's largest oil deposit this year after waiting almost half his 23 years in office for the $48 billion project to start. The Kashagan field was halted in October, a month after production started, because of defects found in pipes carrying lethal sulfur-laden natural gas from the oil field. The operating company, a venture that includes Exxon Mobil Corp. (XOM) and Royal Dutch Shell Plc (RDSA), is completing tests at the site and hasn't said when output will resume.

 

Kazakhstan: Corporate Retreat from LSE Raises Governance Questions

 

enrc-mining-009When Kazakhstan's president, Nursultan Nazarbayev, rang the bell to open trading on the London Stock Exchange (LSE) in late November 2006, he was symbolically ushering in a new era. Companies flush with cash from Kazakhstan's energy-driven economy were flocking to list in London, where they were welcomed as rising stars.

 

Third Industrial Revolution

 

The first industrial revolution in the 19th Century was the invention of the steam engine. In the 20th Century oil and gas played a large role, and the US invented the telephone and television. Electrical supplies became centralised.

 

Curious tale of the central Asian oligarchs and the City of London

 

Mining firm ENRC bids farewell to the Stock Exchange but its Uzbek and Kyrgyz creators are here to stay. It is May 2010 at Monaco's vast Le Sporting banquet hall, where 800 guests have responded to an invitation from one of central Asia's most powerful, and secretive, oligarchs.

 

Central Asian Economies: Thirty Years After Dissolution of the Soviet Union

Central Asian Economies: Thirty Years After Dissolution of the Soviet Union

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Europe’s weak protections for refugees leave Central Asian dissidents at extreme risk

Europe’s weak protections for refugees leave Central Asian dissidents at extreme risk

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Analysis: Central Asian countries need to remain focused on reforms despite new security threats

Analysis: Central Asian countries need to remain focused on reforms despite new security threats

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