Moscow market index hits record high

We add the latest on Nord Stream II

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Russian Stock Exchange breaks record
The Moscow Stock Exchange Index (IMOEX) set a historic record of just under 2,600 points on Tuesday.

Drivers of this growth included the securities of Lukoil, X5 Retail Group, Rosneft, Inter RAO and Russneft.
The Russian energy sector benefited from the recently announced US embargo on Iranian oil, causing the Brent crude price on the London Stock Exchange to break more than $ 74, a high for the year. According to experts, the index could even grow to 2,700 points in the next few weeks.

Also from Ostexperte, we find a potential spanner in the economic works: A candidate for EC chief wants to stop Nord Stream II. The CEO of the Nord Steam Project threatens suit:

Nord Stream 2 is considering lawsuit against EU

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In a letter to EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, Matthias Warning, the CEO of the Nord Stream II project company, is considering a lawsuit against the EU. The background to this is the adaptation of the EU gas directive, according to which stringent regulations for pipelines within the EU will in future also be applied to pipelines from third countries.

Thus, Gazprom could no longer be the supplier and operator of the planned gas connection at the same time. This measure would be “discriminatory” and contrary to EU law.

Since 2015, almost 6 billion euros have gone into the project, the implementation had already started years ago. Therefore, Nord Stream II should be exempted, Warnig said. Otherwise, the company is considering taking legal action against the EU based on the International Energy Charter. The pipeline is scheduled to go into operation at the end of 2019, but there is still a route permit from Denmark.

The leading candidate of the European People’s Party (EPP), Manfred Weber, wants to campaign for a freeze on  construction of Nord Stream II in the event his an election as head of the European Commission. According to him, the project is not in the European interest. The CSU politician, who could replace the European Commission chief Juncker in the European elections in late May, said it in an interview with a Polish newspaper.

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