President Vladimir Putin vowed on Tuesday to conquer ever broader expanses of the Arctic for Russia’s oil and natural gas giants while inviting foreign majors to take part in the development boom.
Russia’s dominant leader invited both senior executives and ministers to the first major meeting devoted to energy since his return to the Kremlin for an historic third term in May.
Putin relied on soaring energy prices to ensure record growth during his 2000-2008 presidency and will be keen to maintain that performance even as world prices wobble and supplies slowly dwindle at old Siberian fields.
The Kremlin chief said the Arctic now represented Russia’s main hope — and that tie-ups with foreign majors were its best option for exploiting the forbidding environment fast.
“In the coming years, we have to develop the geography… and more actively reach new shelf deposits,” Putin said in a live television transmission of the meeting.
“We must attract foreign capital,” Putin added in reference to three major Arctic deals the state firm Rosneft signed in the past year in hope of gaining access to global markets and the technology needed to tap hard-to-reach sites.
“We have already seen such examples and many of them are of a grand scale. We have to establish stable rules of the game for the market, which in turn will help the foreigners build long-term plans.
Russia is currently the world’s largest oil exporter and biggest natural gas producer.
But that status has been a double-edge soared that has keep growth dependent on external factors and the government hesitant to invest in other industries during petrodollar-driven booms.
Russian leaders had made economic diversification their mantra throughout Putin’s 12 years in power. Putin himself however said on Tuesday he viewed oil and gas as a high-tech industry that required further help from the state.
“When they say that we remain hooked on oil, this is without question partially true. And we must develop high-end technologies,” said Putin.
“But one must not forget that the oil and gas industry is in fact one of those high-tech industries,” Putin added.
Neo-Nazi ‘Atomwaffen Division’ holding live-fire militia training exercises at ‘The Base’: report
One sign of the growing white nationalist crisis in America is a new outreach effort for paramilitary training.
"A neo-Nazi group focused on providing paramilitary-style training to far-right extremists has been conducting a massive recruitment drive and claims to have already conducted live-fire training with its members," Vice News reports.
"The Base, which is connected to extreme-right groups the Atomwaffen Division and the Feuerkrieg Division, has been promoting its growth on social media with photos announcing its presence in major cities across North America, including New York, Los Angeles, and Seattle, and in Europe, South Africa, and Australia," Vice reported. "The images often include a small contingent (typically one to three) of masked, camo-clad men holding weapons standing in front of The Base's flag, a black flag with three white lines running down the centre."
Oklahoma police searching for man who shot Taco Bell employee in dispute over the drive-thru
Police are searching for a man who allegedly shot a Taco Bell employee early Saturday morning.
"The employee was shot in the leg after asking the customer to pull forward in the drive-thru," KFOR-TV reported Saturday. "The customer argued, but eventually pulled forward, and that’s when he pulled out a gun and shot the employee."
‘Not surprised at all that the president sides with the white nationalists’: Native American Congresswoman
One of the first two Native America women blasted President Donald Trump for siding with white nationalists on Saturday.
Following the fatal "Unite the Right" rally in Charlottesville in 2017, Trump claimed there were "fine people" on both sides when he defended the alt-Right and Neo-Nazi event.
Two years later, Trump has gone even further, blaming only the anti-fascist activists confronting far-right marching in Portland, Oregon in a way that reminds many of the invasion of Charlottesville.
Rep. Deb Haaland (D-NM) was asked about Trump's tweet by CNN's Ana Cabrera.