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Russia seeks to revive offshore Arctic ambitions

New oil finds and melting ice are helping to reignite interest in the region

The cost and complexity of offshore drilling in the Russian Arctic have proved a headache for oil companies over the years. But with Gazprom keen to revive the giant Shtokman project and the Kremlin offering generous tax breaks, it may be time for another look. Western sanctions on Russia and low energy prices have been a hindrance to activity, but the main problem has been that most of the deposits in the region are gas, rather than more profitable oil. The abandonment of the Shtokman gas project back in 2012 showed that even the collective clout of Gazprom, Statoil and Total couldn't make the region viable at that time. But now things could be changing, especially in light of fresh oil d

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