MOSCOW, May 21 (Itar-Tass) - Russia and Azerbaijan are preparing to sign a new agreement on Azerbaijani oil transit, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said after the negotiations with his visiting Azerbaijani counterpart Elmar Mamedyarov here on Tuesday.
“The Azerbaijani oil transit agreement Baku-Novorossiisk was signed in 1996,” the Russian minister recalled. “In the signing of the agreement we assumed that the pipeline will be filled completely,” Lavrov said. “The tariff was negotiated for this idea. It happened that the filling capacity is lower and the agreement for our operator is loss-making,” Lavrov went on to say. “Now our specific energy agencies and companies are drafting a new intergovernmental agreement, which will reflect modern realities, but not the realities of 1996.”
For his part, Elmar Mamedyarov noted that “today we discussed the issue of Transneft.” “It should absolutely not be politicized. The dialogue will be continued between the companies to attain an appropriate agreement. All these issues are settled as part of the routine work,” the Azerbaijani foreign minister underlined.