MOSCOW, September 6 (Itar-Tass) - Belarus Ai-92 (RON 92) gasoline trading has not resumed on the St. Petersburg International Mercantile Exchange, sources at the exchange told Itar-Tass. They were halted on August 26, the day Russia's Uralkali potash company director general Vladislav Baumgertner was detained at Minsk airport in a legal clash with a Belarusian company also working in fertilizer production.
But Belarus was not breaking supply commitments to Russia since no agreement existed on regularity and price, a Belneftekhim company source told Itar-Tass, commenting on information that no offers arrived from Belarusian oil refineries on the St. Petersburg exchange.
The source said Belarus might have reasons to halt gasoline sales in Russia, including the planned Mozyr refinery repair from September 15 to October 15 and the country's need to store fuel. "Production at the refinery will stop from September 15 and this already has an effect on the Belarusian market," the official said.
In early August, after fuel prices rose on the Russian market, Russia's energy ministry said the increase was partly due to lower oil product imports, at 100,000 tons a month, from Belarus. Russian companies supplying oil to Belarus for refining were recommended to return ready oil products to Russia and Belarusian authorities were asked to manage product delivery to Russia.
Belarus supplied about 770,000 tons of gasoline and diesel fuel to Russia from January to June under contracts concluded at Russian exchanges. Belarus increased supplies in the second quarter compared to January-March.
Belneftekhim's source said the amount of fuel supplied to Russia in 2013 would reflect demand.