The US State Department’s Bureau of Intelligence and Research (INR)
reports that Gazprom Chairman (and Russia's Deputy Vice President) Dmitriy Medvedev is demanding
The most realistic strategy to offset the sharp decline in production from existing fields is to bring production online from new fields at Yamal, Shtokman, and
Gazprom’s demands that UES shift to coal-generation can also be explained by simple profit maximization—more gas to sell on the foreign market, where it commands a higher price than under domestic price controls. This explanation, however, fails to explain the timing of Gazprom’s demand. It seems logical that if profit maximization was sufficient rationale to switch back to coal-generation, we would have heard of these demands years ago when this rationale would have been equally valid. Is the more reasonable rationale that Gazprom is scrambling to compensate for plummeting production, under the realization that their mega-projects will not live up to expectations?