Transneft resumed pumping Russian oil through Druzhba in transit through Ukraine

MOSCOW, 11 Aug — Transneft has resumed pumping oil through the southern branch of the Druzhba pipeline in the direction of Hungary and Slovakia, Igor Demin, adviser to the president of the company, said.

Anton Molnar, a spokesman for the Slovak refinery Slovnaft, told the agency that oil had begun to flow into the country.

Transneft confirmed the day before that Ukrtransnafta on August 4 stopped pumping oil through the southern branch of the pipeline to Hungary, the Czech Republic and Slovakia, as it cannot make a transit payment under the sanctions.

On August 10, it became known that the Hungarian company MOL and the Slovak refinery Slovnaft agreed with Ukraine to resume supplies and paid transit costs. According to Molnar, MOL and the Slovnaft refinery are ready to continue to play an active mediating role in solving problems related to EU regulation.

“Both Slovnaft and MOL want to continue to play the role of an active intermediary in finding a long-term solution in the changed conditions caused by EU regulation. The payments currently made will be adjusted with the Russian side as part of mutual settlements,” Molnar said.

Blackmail

The Hungarian portal Origo, describing the situation with the stoppage of oil transit through Druzhba, called this step blackmail on the part of Kyiv.

According to the authors of the article, the conflict in Ukraine entered a new phase after “Kyiv tried to blackmail European countries by blocking the Druzhba oil pipeline.”

“President Volodymyr Zelensky’s goals are clear: he wants as much chaos as possible in Europe, and on the other hand, he wants to hit back Hungary because we don’t want to get involved in a war and don’t send weapons to Ukraine. The Ukrainian government is constantly attacking not only Hungary, but also on their other allies,” writes Origo.

In May, after Hungary announced that it was impossible to completely abandon Russian gas, Olena Zerkal, adviser to the Minister of Energy of Ukraine, said that Kyiv had leverage on Budapest in the form of transit through Druzhba, with which “something could happen.”

There will be no deliveries to the Czech Republic

Oil supplies to the Czech Republic via the southern branch of the Druzhba pipeline will not resume, Linda Vashkovichova, assistant to the head of Transpetrol, told reporters.

The head of the Czech Ministry of Industry and Trade, Josef Sikela, said that Prague and Warsaw are jointly looking for a supply solution that will suit the parties from a legal and technical point of view. The Polish company PKN Orlen owns the largest oil refineries in the Czech Republic.

Sikela also assured that the Czech Republic has strategic oil reserves for about 90 days.

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