The ban on Russian oil supplies is costing Polish refiner PKN Orlen millions of dollars a day. The company states that it is having trouble finding alternative supplies for its Czech refinery in Litvínov, writes the Financial Times (FT) on its website. According to the CEO of the Polish company, Daniel Obajtek, anti-Russian sanctions should be stricter.
Obajtek talks about a loss of about 27 million dollars (almost 573 million CZK) a day. He says the price difference of about $30 per barrel between cheaper Russian oil and alternative supplies is to blame.
“I wouldn’t call it a loss: it’s about not supporting Russia,” Obajtek told the British paper. “These are market costs and apply to any company that does not import oil from Russia,” he said.
However, he added that his company still uses Russian oil piped through the Druzhba network for the Czech refinery in Litvínov, which has not yet been subject to sanctions, despite the government in Warsaw pushing for tougher EU sanctions against Moscow.
“The complete replacement of Russian oil requires improving the logistics of oil supplies, which we are working on with the Czech government,” Obajtek told the FT.
Orlen also continued to import Russian crude into its domestic market until February. And this despite Poland’s original promise to stop importing Russian oil by the end of last year. Last month, Orlen announced it had terminated its latest contract with Russia’s Tatneft, saying it could not do so sooner without risking a Russian lawsuit for breaching the terms of the contract.
Last year, the European Union banned the import of oil from Russia by sea. However, the ban did not include oil transported over land via the Druzhba pipeline network, which connects Russia with Poland and several other EU countries, including Slovakia and the Czech Republic.
While Orlen himself is trying to become independent from Russia, according to Obajtek, Russian oil companies are still “flooding Europe with petrochemical products” and other oil derivatives despite EU sanctions designed to reduce Russia’s ability to finance the war in Ukraine. He listed several loopholes that allowed the Russian oil sector to continue to earn “decent money” from the EU. However, he did not provide specific evidence of sanctions violations. “To sum it up, I think the sanctions should be stricter. It shouldn’t be just a trick to improve Europe’s media image,” Obajtek said.
Russian and Ukrainian delegations clashed at the summit in Turkey (5/5/2023)
Delegations of Russians and Ukrainians met face to face. A punch ended their fight. | Video: Reuters
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