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Belarus president counts on agreement on future cooperation with Rosneft

MINSK (BelTA) – Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko counts on an agreement on future cooperation with Rosneft. The head of state made the statement as he met with Chief Executive Officer, Chairman of the Management Board of the Russian oil company Rosneft Igor Sechin on 18 February, BelTA has learned.

Aleksandr Lukashenko said: “Thank you for coming. There is nothing to hide – I wanted to discuss the oil situation evolving in Belarus-Russia relations with the head of the largest oil-extracting public company. I know you are aware of the situation but it would be wrong not to even consult with you about individual matters, about how we can work from now on, including with Rosneft. Because last year Rosneft supplied Belarus with nothing less than half of the oil we bought in Russia and processed here, in Belarus.”

“I would like full clarity. I think since you and I have known each other for a long time, you will be able to give some hints and we will be able to come to terms on our future cooperation,” Aleksandr Lukashenko added.

Rosneft is a leader of the Russian oil industry and a major public oil and gas corporation on the international scale. Rosneft specializes in surveying and exploration of hydrocarbon deposits, extraction of oil, natural gas, gas condensate, implementation of projects to develop subsea fields, processing of extracted raw materials, sales of oil, natural gas and derivative products in Russia and abroad.

BelTA reported earlier that contracts on delivering Russian oil to Belarus expired on 31 December 2019. The sides have been in negotiations on extending the contracts since then, but have not been able to agree on the terms. The companies RussNeft and Neftisa controlled by the Russian businessman Mikhail Gutseriyev resumed deliveries of crude materials to Belarus on 4 January. Apart from that, the first batch of Norwegian oil reached the Belarusian oil refinery Naftan on 26 January.

Another round of talks involving the presidents of Belarus and Russia took place on 7 February. After the talks it was stated that Minsk and Moscow will continue discussing oil deliveries purely on commercial terms.

News was released on 17 February that Oil Company Yangpur, a daughter enterprise of the Belarusian state petrochemical concern Belneftekhim, extracts oil in Russia's Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous District and intends to supply oil to Belarus. Belneftekhim representatives did not specify either the volume or the schedule of deliveries. Oil Company Yangpur has been part of Belorusneft since 2013. The company represents Belorusneft on the Russian market of oil and natural gas extraction, performs geological surveying, exploration, and extraction of hydrocarbon resources from seven fields in the Izvestinsky licensed site located in Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous District.

TASS quoted Aleksandr Dyukov, head of Gazprom Neft Company, as saying on 12 February that the Russian company is ready to discuss various schemes for oil deliveries with Belarus. Aleksandr Dyukov made the relevant statement after representatives of oil companies met with Russian Energy Minister Aleksandr Novak. Aleksandr Dyukov noted the company is ready to discuss deliveries on a give-and-take basis.