Russia's oil output hits post-Soviet high
MOSCOW (AFP) - Russian leaders hailed their powerful energy industry on Sunday as the country posted a post-Soviet record high rate of oil production that should boost coffers in uncertain global economic times.
The energy ministry's data reporting unit said Russia produced 10.38 million barrels per day in August - a fractional increase on July that put it above any mark seen in the past two decades.
Nearly a quarter of that oil was produced by the state's massive Rosneft unit that recently struck historic new Arctic exploration alliances with the US super-major ExxonMobil as well as Italian and Norwegian firms.
Analysts said production is rising as companies seek to take advantage of strong global oil prices before a potential hit from the impact of a mooted Greek withdrawal from the euro zone in the months to come. But the news is especially welcome for a budget that earned 49 per cent of its revenues from oil and gas sales in 2011 and will now hope for output to meet President Vladimir Putin's big spending promises for his third term.