Tuesday, November 23

Oil prices retreat in the face of supply and demand pressures

, reports Reuters. Prices fell on Monday as rising COVID-19 cases in Europe, and a potential release of Japanese oil reserves raised concerns about both oversupply and weak demand. Brent crude was down 56 cents, or 0.7%, at $78.33 a barrel, and the US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude fell 54 cents, or 0.7%, to $75.40. The combined SPR release could be 100 mln to 120 mln barrels or even higher, including 45 mln to 60 mln barrels from the United States, about 30 mln barrels from China, 5 mln barrels from India, and 10 mln barrels each from Japan and South Korea, Citibank estimated.

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Nord Stream 2 will be launched without certification might be possible.  According to reports in the German newspaper, Handelsblatt, the gas pipeline may start operating without certification. This scenario was played out with German projects NEL and EGL 401. However, in this case, Nord Stream 2 may be fined €1 mln, according to the estimates of the German Federal Network Agency (BNA). The penalty for putting the gas pipeline into operation in Germany was acceptable, given that the cost of the entire Nord Stream 2 project is €10 bln.

The Ukrainian President, Volodymyr Zelensky, has announced the establishment of a new state airline Ukrainian National Airlines (UNA) . The new carrier will start flights in 2022 from two domestic and 14 international destinations. By 2026 the new airline will operate domestic flights to 8 destinations, and 7,000 flights a year. Medium-haul routes within the regional international network will commence in 2022. As a result, there will be flights to 14 destinations. In this segment, the plan for 2023-2026 is 37 destinations, reported ukrinform.

The newly-elected Chancellor, Olaf Scholz, is ready to support Ukraine’s move towards EU membership. The coalition agreement of the new German government contains a clause stating its readiness to support Ukraine’s movement towards membership in the European Union. The agreement reads, “We will work together with the EU and its Member States to further develop the Eastern Partnership and a market economy. It is also noted that the German government will continue to assist Ukraine in restoring its full territorial integrity and sovereignty”.