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Expert says Ukraine can't rule out all oil products of Russian origin

April 06, 19:37 UTC+3 MOSCOW
Earlier on Wednesday, Ukraine’s Prime Minister Arseny Yatsenyuk said the cabinet would consider on Friday a ban on imports of Russian oil products
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© Maxim Slutsky/TASS

MOSCOW, April 6. /TASS/. Ukraine will be unable to fully rule out the purchases of oil products of Russian origin since the oil products it imports from Belarus are also derived from Russian crude oil, a leading expert of Russia’s Fund for National Energy Security told TASS on Wednesday.

"Surely there’s no getting away from it," said Igor Yushkov, the expert. "Or else, they’ll have to resort to a fantastical option, under which they won’t be buying oil products either in Belarus or in Russia."

"If this is the case, they’ll have to haul the products by automobile transport or in railway tanks from European countries but the costs will several times higher," he said. "In other words, that’s a scenario for an energy crisis and product shortages if they face irregularities in supplies."

"On the face of it, the prices will go up several times over," Yushkov said. "Still I think they (Ukrainian authorities - TASS) won’t give up deliveries (of oil products) from Belarus."

Earlier on Wednesday, Ukraine’s Prime Minister Arseny Yatsenyuk said the cabinet would consider on Friday a ban on imports of Russian oil products.

The steps Yatsenyuk plans to take in connection with the proposed ban will do little more than complicating the situation in the already overstrained Ukrainian economy, Yushkov said.

"Virtually all the oil refineries in Ukraine are out of operation and that’s why the Ukrainians are buying abroad practically all the fuel, especially diesel fuel," he said. "A big inflow of products comes to them from Belarus."

"Belarus exports all the crude produced on its territory - and that’s about 1.6 million tons - to Germany, while its two refineries make derivatives exclusively from Russian crude," Yushkov said.

Russia’s Federal Service for Statistics (Rosstat) says Russian companies exported about 2 million tons of oil products worth more than $ 1 billion to Ukraine last year. Gas oil, or the prime derivative out of which finished fuel is produced, accounted for 60% of all the supplies from 2013 through to 2015.

In 2015, the exports of gasoline proper totaled a mere 10,000 tons.

In the meantime, the Belarusian statistics agency says Belarusian producers exported 3.2 million tons of oil products to Ukraine last year and received $ 1.7 billion for it.

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