Trade between Russia and Japan has quadrupled in the last decade and will only continue

Three well known credit rating agencies are located in the US and they have just downgraded Japan’s credit rating reducing any confidence in Japan’s “Abenomics”. It is interesting that three credit rating agencies are located in the US making credit ratings on Japan’s banks and corporations. Even though Russia and Japan have had a long complicated history and the Kuril islands haven’t been resolved, both countries continue inroads into becoming closer trading partners as Japan is caught between Russia and the Anglo-Americans. Oil in Russia can now be produced at US$2 a barrel and that means as Japan continues investing in Russian infrastructure especially in the energy sector, this will probably mean Japan will increase purchases of Russian produced oil and natural gas. It costs Saudi Arabia where Japan purchases the majority of its oil from, between US$10 and US$25 per barrel to produce. Trade between Russia and Japan has quadrupled in the last decade and it will only continue. Simultaneously, China has replaced the US as Japan’s largest trading partner. Will Japan gradually pivot to Russia for most of its energy requirements in the coming year as Japan’s engineering and construction capability are shared with Russia?

To a certain extent, Japan I think is rearming to placate the US while walking a fine line between China and Russia. It scares the heck out of China to see Japan rearm and has Beijing very nervous. As the Anglo-Americans “pivot to the east” to counter China and Russia, Japan risks seriously compromising its ability to get along with China and Russia. As Japan rearms, this might not only make Washington happy –  and profitable – but it might in the long run allow Japan better opportunities to possibly jettison the Anglo-Americans which would allow Japan far more flexibility in its foreign policy. It was Russia that suggested Japan take a seat on the UN security council which Japan became a “non-permanent member.” Just prior to Fukushima, Japan’s emperor was planning on a state visit to Beijing and the Japanese were making serious inroads into ejecting the US from Okinawa. When Fukushima happened that all came to an end. In January, 2011 just before Fukushima, the US Secretary of Defense Robert Gates warned Japan: “Cease and desist from this course of action.” Some Japanese investigators took that as a credible threat. As it stands now, Japan is causing Anglo-American foreign policy towards Russia to fracture.

Source: Fort Russ

Ministry of Energy: Cost of Production of Russian Oil Is $2 per Barrel

March 23, 2016

by Kristina Kharlova

Vladimir PutinAccording to the Deputy Minister of Energy of Russia Kirill Molodtsov, “the average production cost of a barrel of Russian oil is about $2. The cost of producing hard-to-recover and offshore reserves is above $20. The rates also vary significantly depending on the cycle of mineral development. With declining production, the cost is higher, since at the same cost level less oil is extracted,” – said the official.

Earlier the president of “Rosneft” Igor Sechin said that because of financial speculators oil prices could fall to $10 per barrel. According to him, the annual decline in average daily production in the world is estimated at 3 million barrels a day. Meanwhile, according to Sechin, the excess of supply of oil over demand is between 1.5 and 1.7 million barrels a day, according to RBC.

Saudi Arabia is ready to sign an agreement on limiting oil production, even if Iran does not.