In his zeal to monopolize gas supplies, Vladimir Putin, who is now Russia’s prime minister, committed Gazprom to long-term contracts with Central Asian countries for gas at a cost far in excess of current world prices. Now that the world economic crisis has sharply curtailed demand for gas, Gazprom is saddled with a glut of expensive Central Asian supplies that it is forced to sell at a loss.This is a signficant development for the Russian government because Gazprom is the country's largest taxpayers, and its tax payments this year will decrease from $40 billion to $22.5 billion.
222. Gas prices have increased to about $2.20 / $2.25 per gallon (from less than $2.00 one month ago). Will the increase continue? What's causing it? I get the sense that economists are still very divided as to whether the biggest large-scale concern is inflation or deflation.