Russia's oil is key to development of global economy

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TOKYO, September 4 (RIA Novosti, Andrei Fesyun) - The future development of the global economy is impossible without Russia's energy resources, a Russian oil expert said in an interview with RIA Novosti.

Gennady Shmal, president of the Union of Oil and Gas Industrialists of Russia, said, "The goal of our participation [in the Days of Russia's Oil and Gas organized in the context of the EXPO-2005 international trade show in Japan] is to show how Russia's energy sector influences global economy and demonstrate the capabilities of the Russian energy industry in terms of cooperation with large Japanese companies."

According to the expert, "Russia should be more aggressive in the Far East considering high demand for energy supplies on the part of Asian countries, primarily China, and also knowing that the prices for fuel-carriers in the region are 10%-20% higher than those in Europe."

"The East for us begins in the Urals," Shmal said. "We should not look only at the West, at Europe, which has been already saturated with oil and gas pipelines; we must construct pipelines in Siberia trying to correct the existing economic imbalance."

Russia has unique experience in the construction of oil and gas infrastructure and wants to attract the interest of Japanese corporations to joint projects in the energy sphere, the expert said.

Despite the resistance of certain Japanese government officials, "the current situation has changed and new opportunities for future cooperation have appeared," he added.

Business presumes mutual efforts, Shmal said. "We are always ready to cooperate if Japan wishes to do the same."

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