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Oil exports through Novorossiysk, where Romanian refineries are supplied, affected by the strong storm in the Black Sea


The recent storm in the Black Sea affected the oil exports through the two terminals in the Russian harbour Novorossiysk with over two million barrels per day (b/day), according to the officials of the Kazakh state officials and the data of the Russian port agents, affecting the deliveries, including to the refineries in Romania which use Kazakh feedstock, writes https:// www.profit.ro/.

 Two  out of three refineries in Romania (Petromidia, operated by Rompetrol, company member of the group KazMunaiGas – KMG International and Petrotel, owned by the Russian group Lukoil) feed usually exclusively with import oil, exported from the terminal Caspian Pipeline Consortium – CPC – from Novorossiysk. Even OMV Petrom uses, for the refinery Petrobrazi only two thirds oil from the domestic production, a third being imported. What is even more interesting is the fact that at present, the Ploiesti refinery Petrotel Lukoil, controlled by the Russian oil giant with the same name, is stopped, being under revision.


Restarting should happen on 1st December, but the Romanian Customs Authority (AVR) through the Customs Office of Bucharest invalidated the wholesale energy products trading certificate of the Bucharest branch of Litasco SA Geneve, the crude oil and petroleum products trading division, registered in Switzerland of the Russian giant Lukoil, through which the Russians control the most important businesses in Romania, namely the Lukoil petrol stations network and the Petrotel refinery.


As a result of the storm, the oil shipments from the Novorossiysk port's onshore terminal, as well as those from the Caspian Pipeline Consortium (CPC) near Yuzhnaya Ozereyevka, have been suspended since last week. 


The largest oil fields in Kazakhstan – Tengiz, Kashagan and Karachaganak – reduced, starting with 27th November the combined daily oil production by 56% as the storm disrupts loads at CPC – the main export terminal for the Kazakh oil, announced the minister of energy in Kazakhstan, quoted by Reuters. It is assumed that the interruption will drop the oil production of Kazakhstan by 631,700 metric ton for this week, he said, adding that it is not clear when the situation comes back to normal.


The Novorossiysk port in Russia at the Black Sea, the largest oil products sales point in the Black Sea, was closed for loading on Tuesday, according to the data of the port agents consulted by Reuters. Two oil tanks, of 80,000 tons each, waited more than a week together with approximately ten tanks each that did not start loading the weather to improve so that they could navigate .


In November the loading of 2.42 million tons (approximately 580,000 b/day) of petroleum products was planned in Novorossiysk, the effective quantity being 1.5 million tons, stated two traders familiarized with the situation.

The Russian oil companies will redirect the majority of the volumes to the Baltic ports in December, they said. By comparison to Russia, Kazakhstan does not have many alternative export routes for its oil. According to the present plan, said the Kazakh minister of energy, the production will drop even more until 3rd December, the Tengiz deposit led by Chevron stopping the production completely, oil extraction in Kazakhstan dropping by 126,000 tons per day.


According to the Kazakh minister, the oil production in November, without including condensed gas will be 1, 5888 million b/day and that of December 1,673 million b/day, dropping from 1,605 million, and respectively 1,599 million b/day, previously planned.


The largest oil fields in Kazakhstan are operated in the largest part by western oil companies such as ExxonMobil, Shell, Eni and Total. In February, the American giant ExxonMobil warned about the danger of the interruption by Russia of the Kazakh oil transit through the pipeline Caspian Pipeline Consortium (CPC) through which the refineries in Romania are fed.


At the end of March, the Kazakh minister of energy stated that ‘number one issue’ of Kazakhstan is how to diversify its oil routes, so that it would not be dependent on Russia to export its oil. Indirectly, this is ‘ number one issue’ for Romania as well, which relies mainly on oil import from Kazakhstan to replace the Russian oil, as starting with 5th December there comes into effect the embargo imposed by the EU to import of Russian oil.