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1. OIL AND GAS:

With future deals in mind, state-owned oil giants reach out to U.S. energy elite

HOUSTON -- Of all the high-ranking officials speaking at the five-day IHS CERAWeek conference ending today, none made a greater impression than Igor Sechin, president of OAO Rosneft, the state-owned Russian oil and gas conglomerate. Sechin, standing behind a lectern on stage at the front of a massive hotel ballroom, with his very presence commanded respect from the audience of energy professionals. Conference host Daniel Yergin said it was Sechin's first major address in front of a U.S. audience, adding to an allure surrounding the executive that seemed to make even Yergin nervous. Sechin wasn't there to make anyone nervous, but rather to open up opportunities.

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