Serbia considers connecting to Druzhba oil pipeline in light of EU sanctions
BELGRADE, 7 October – RIA Novosti. Serbian authorities are considering the possibility of connecting to the Druzhba oil pipeline in Hungary, in light of a new EU sanctions package against the Russian Federation, which blocks the delivery of oil from the Russian Federation via Croatia, declaration Serbian Ministry of Mines and Energy.
The EU on Thursday introduced the eighth anti-Russian sanctions package, which includes both new economic restrictions and expanded personal sanctions lists. Among the economic sanctions is the introduction of a legal framework to set the ceiling price for the shipping of Russian oil to third countries. The price limit is scheduled to be introduced on December 5 for oil and February 5, 2023 for petroleum products.
The package of measures was actively supported by Croatia, where the port of Omišalj, located on the island of Krk in the Adriatic Sea, has a terminal for receiving oil and oil products tankers. From there, oil is sent via a pipeline to Serbia for processing at the Serbian Petroleum Industry (NIS) facility, 56.15% of which are owned by companies belonging to the Gazprom group. Serbian Interior Minister Alexander Vulin said on Thursday that with the eighth package of EU sanctions against Russia, Russia has implemented its first package of sanctions against Serbia, which depends on oil supplies via Croatia.
“The plan is to diversify the supply of crude oil by connecting to the Druzhba pipeline. There are two options for connecting to this. The first is to lay a pipeline to Szeged, to Aldieu. The Serbian Ministry of Energy states that the volume of the oil refinery in Pančevo is approximately 104 kilometers, of which 104 kilometers is on Serbian territory. He said that it is 128 kilometers and the investment volume is approximately 83 million Euros, 64 of which are on our land.
“The second option to connect to Druzhba, near Budapest, is the construction of a 400-kilometer oil pipeline from Novi Sad to Sazkhalombatta, with an estimated cost of around 240m euros. The Serbian market will continue to receive Russian oil,” the statement said.
It was noted that both options are currently being analyzed and the Serbian government will have to make a decision on the construction of a new oil pipeline, the volume of which “will be coordinated with the processing volume of the refinery in Pancevo”.
Banning oil supplies from Russia by tankers and pumping it through Croatia would increase Serbia’s costs of purchasing raw materials by 20% and cost the country’s budget hundreds of millions of euros, Serbian Prime Minister Ana Brnabic said on Friday.
The state-owned operator of the JANAF oil pipeline in Croatia announced on April 22 that it will continue to supply raw materials to NIS after withdrawing from the EU sanctions package. In January, NIS signed a new one-year contract with JANAF to supply 3.2 million tons of crude oil.
On August 21, Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic reminded citizens that, due to sanctions, from November 1, Serbia will not be able to buy oil from Russia, which was delivered to the country by tankers from the Adriatic Sea and then through an oil pipeline. Croatia. Vučić said at the end of June that Serbia should find an alternative to Russian oil because of Western sanctions on oil supplies from tankers from Russia.