Bulgaria to permit exports of some merchandise of LUKOIL Neftochim oil refinery

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SOFIA — Bulgaria’s authorities selected Friday to permit the export of some merchandise produced by processing Russian crude oil by its solely oil refinery, managed by Russia’s LUKOIL, in a bid to maintain the plant operational.

The interim authorities determined that the Balkan nation would benefit from its two-year exemption from the European Union ban on import of Russian crude that takes impact on Dec. 5 as a part of the EU sanctions in opposition to Moscow over its warfare in Ukraine.

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The federal government mentioned it will ban the export of LUKOIL Neftochim Burgas output processed from Russian crude after March 5, except for a few of its merchandise. It didn’t present particulars on which merchandise might be cleared for export.

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Deputy Premier Hristo Aleksiev mentioned earlier on Friday that some byproducts and derivatives that don’t have a market in Bulgaria needs to be allowed for export to keep away from overload of the refinery’s depots and its eventual shutdown.

“It will make sense to ban the export of diesel gas, which is required for home consumption,” Aleksiev informed the parliament.

“However the refinery produces different derivatives and byproducts, which can’t be bought in Bulgaria. If a few of them usually are not cleared for export, the refinery’s depots might be full in 14 days and it must shut down,” he mentioned.

The federal government initially argued that the refinery, which processes about 7 million tonnes of crude per yr and has switched to solely Russian crude because the spring, needs to be allowed to export its fuels with the intention to keep operational and pay increased taxes within the Balkan nation.

The European Fee has prompt that permitting exports of fuels produced by Russian crude may very well be a breach of the sanctions, and critics have accused the federal government of working within the curiosity of the Russian firm.

Final month the refinery has mentioned it might must shut down if the federal government doesn’t observe by on plans to permit the Russian-owned enterprise to proceed exporting. (Reporting by Tsvetelia Tsolova in Sofia Modifying by Matthew Lewis)

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