Ukraine Is Ready to Start Oil Transit to Belarus

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Kiev proposes to use the Odessa-Brody oil pipeline and rail transportation to make up for raw materials shortfall caused by the lack of Russian supplies. Ukraine can provide oil supplies for Belarusian oil refineries via the Odessa-Brody pipeline and railway transport, Ukrainian Ambassador to Minsk Igor Kizim said on Wednesday, February 19. He emphasized that this would be an act of support from Kiev to Minsk: “When we had a problem in the summer with diesel supplies Belarus gave us a shoulder.” It is about the Russian embargo on fuel supplies to Ukraine in the summer of 2019, the Belarusian edition noted. On January 1, 2020, Russian oil companies stopped oil supplies to Belarus due to the lack of signed contracts. Minsk refused to pay a premium to the price of oil suppliers amid rising prices for Russian raw materials. President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko demanded to reduce the country's dependence on Russian oil and bring the volume all the republic’s oil need imports from Russia to 30-40%. Earlier, Belarus had already received a batch of Norwegian oil through Lithuania. Options for American and Saudi oil deliveries through European ports are being explored. Lukashenko also said that Belarus could uptake transit oil from the Druzhba pipeline.