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Eastern Europe

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  • *U.S. exports to Asia not profitable at current prices. Asia has traditionally taken more than 70 percent of annual global liquefied natural gas demand, and exporters developing new projects in the United States, Canada and Australia had been looking to China, Japan and South Korea- the world's top three buyers- as the most reliable outlets. Nuclear energy, coal and...

  • After months in which Kiev has been faithfully paying for gas and Moscow reliably supplying it under a deal brokered by the European Union, this week has seen the quarrel erupt anew. Russia, which has cut off the gas three times in the past decade, including for six months last year, has once again threatened to switch off supplies unless Ukraine sends more money...

  • *Including IMF, aid could total $60 bln for Ukraine. *Ukraine unable to spend donor money quickly enough. BRUSSELS/ WASHINGTON, Feb 26- Western powers are preparing what they say may be their most potent weapon against Moscow's interference in Ukraine- a multi billion dollar aid package to rebuild a near-bankrupt state and realise the European dream cherished by...

  • BERLIN, Feb 26- Germany is considering buying more tanks in the light of the Ukraine crisis and Europe's deteriorating relations with Russia, after years of drastic cuts left the military operating with just 75 percent of the heavy equipment it needs. "NATO has set new goals on flexibility and rapid reaction time. Lawmakers on both sides of Germany's right-left...

  • BRUSSELS, Feb 26- The European Union said on Thursday it was escalating a dispute with Russia at the World Trade Organization over what it said were excessive import duties on paper products, refrigerators and palm oil. The challenge is the latest in a series of WTO disputes with Russia, the EU's third-biggest trading partner, since Moscow joined the body in 2012,...

  • The presumptive Democratic presidential candidate's environmental record has come under renewed scrutiny after the Wall Street Journal reported that the Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Clinton Foundation and the Clinton Global Initiative have accepted large donations from major energy companies Exxon Mobil and Chevron. The groups also got money from...

  • MOSCOW, Feb 26- Kremlin-controlled Gazprom said on Thursday it would exempt gas supplies to rebel-held regions from its main contract with Ukrainian Naftogaz, days before Kiev uses up gas volumes it has already paid for. The dispute flared up last week when Gazprom said it started direct gas supplies to the regions of eastern Ukraine held by pro- Moscow rebels.

  • Russia could cut off gas to Ukraine by 'end of week' Thursday, 26 Feb 2015 | 6:15 AM ET

    MOSCOW— Russia could cut off supplies to neighboring Ukraine by the end of the week if it does not get further payments from the country, state-owned gas company Gazprom said Thursday. Spokesman Sergei Kupriyanov said in televised remarks that "if no new funds are received from Kiev, then naturally we cannot continue delivering gas to Ukraine."

  • Ukraine currency in limbo after central bank u-turn Thursday, 26 Feb 2015 | 3:56 AM ET

    Ukraine came under greater economic pressure after unexpectedly banning most currency trading and then abruptly reversing course.

  • MOSCOW, Feb 26- Russia's banking system may see its bad loans rise to 17-23 percent of its loan portfolio in 2015 from around 8 percent last year, Standard& Poor's said on Thursday, underlining the impact of an economic crisis on the sector. Banks have suffered spike in bad loans and lower profits because of the crisis, deepened by Western sanctions over Moscow's...

  • MOSCOW, Feb 26- The rouble and Russian shares opened with firm gains on Thursday, tracking up the rallying oil price and following signs that a ceasefire is taking hold in eastern Ukraine. On Thursday Brent was down 0.2 percent at around $61.5 per barrel, still holding comfortably above the $60 mark. He added that investors in Russia would also be encouraged by...

  • *Ukraine says it is too early to follow suit. *Ukraine reverses currency trading halt. KIEV/ MAKIYVKA, Ukraine, Feb 25- Ukraine came under greater economic pressure after unexpectedly banning most currency trading and then abruptly reversing course, wreaking havoc on the hryvnia, just as a truce in the east took hold on Wednesday with no combat fatalities reported.

  • KIEV, Feb 25- Ukraine's central bank unexpectedly banned most currency trading on Wednesday, only to abruptly reverse the decision overnight, causing havoc in the market for the plunging hryvnia. The ban had been imposed in the morning, drawing a rebuke from Prime Minister Arseny Yatseniuk, and had been due to stay in place until the end of the week.

  • LONDON/ MOSCOW, Feb 25- Gas giant Gazprom's oil arm is shifting its trading operations from Austria back to Russia, it said on Wednesday, with industry sources saying the firm wanted to protect huge revenues from potential seizure as Moscow's relations with the West worsen. A decision by Gazprom Neft to relocate trading from Vienna to St Petersburg, Russia's...

  • KIEV, Feb 25- Ukraine's central bank banned most commercial currency trading for the rest of the week on Wednesday and jumped into the market to buy dollars, reversing a free-fall in the hryvnia that it called "irrational". At day's end the central bank announced it had bought $80 million at an official rate of 28.046 to the dollar, close to the rate at the start of the...

  • MOSCOW, Feb 25- The Kremlin was presented with a plan to annex the Crimea peninsula and eastern Ukraine before the overthrow of the country's Moscow- leaning president last year, an independent newspaper reported on Wednesday. Russia has denied it had a plan to annex Crimea before President Viktor Yanukovich fled Kiev on Feb. 21 last year and says it acted in...

  • *Ukraine says it too early to follow suit. KIEV/ MAKIYVKA, Ukraine, Feb 25- Ukraine came under increasing economic pressure from a collapsing currency and a threat to its gas supplies from the Kremlin on Wednesday, just as a long-awaited ceasefire took hold in the east. In rebel-held eastern Ukraine, pro-Russian separatists were withdrawing heavy guns from the...

  • Putin threatens Ukraine with gas cutoff Wednesday, 25 Feb 2015 | 11:14 AM ET

    MOSCOW— President Vladimir Putin warned Wednesday that Russia will cut gas supplies to Ukraine if it fails to pay in advance for future deliveries. Putin said that Ukraine's latest payment would be good only for another three to four days, warning that Russia will have to turn off the tap if Ukraine doesn't remit payment quickly. Last week, Russia accused Ukraine...

  • *Ukraine says Gazprom delivers less than already paid. NOVO-OGARYOVO, Russia, Feb 25- President Vladimir Putin warned on Wednesday that Russia would halt gas supplies to Ukraine if it did not receive advance payment, raising the possibility of onward deliveries to Europe being disrupted for the fourth time in a decade. Kiev and Moscow have argued over gas...

  • Since the establishment in 1951 of the Coal and Steel Community, the precursor of the European Union, advocates of transnational unity have demanded closer cooperation on energy. The European Commission, the EU executive, says the clash with Russia over its seizure of Ukraine's Crimea region means there is the strongest case yet to pool resources across the EU,...