Western Energy Giants Ponder on Future Investments in Russia

As the West contemplates on sanctions against Russia in case of an attack on Ukraine, energy giants that have existing assets in Russian oil and gas industries will be forced to review their future investments in Russia because of the increased risk of sanctions.

While the energy industry had been affected by sanctions on Russia back in 2014 when it annexed Crimea, the new sanctions are expected to be much harsher.

Some of the international oil companies operating in Russia retained a positive stance on their future in Russia, but they are still considering alternative outcomes.

BP and TotalEnergies are two of those companies that have a vested interest in Russian fossil fuel industry. BP holds a nearly 20% stake in Rosneft, Russia’s biggest crude oil producer, and has seen an increase in its output in Russia since 2013, despite the 2014 sanctions.

TotalEnergies also has a very big foothold in the country, holding a nearly 20% stake in Novatek, as well as 20% and 10% stakes in its Yamal LNG and Arctic LNG 2 projects. The French company also owns a 20% interest in the Kharyaga oil field.

Although new sanctions are expected to be imposed should Russia attacks Ukraine, some restrictions could still be possible even if Russia remains docile.

Even if Russia is sanctioned by the West, it is unlikely that Western energy giants will withdraw from Russian projects. However, the situation could affect their future readiness to invest in Russia.

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