MINSK, May 23. /TASS/. Belarus and Russia have finally agreed on the roadmap for replacement of low quality oil in the Druzhba pipeline, Belarusian concern Belneftekhtim reported on Thursday.
"Today in Moscow, Deputy Prime Minister of Belarus Igor Lyashenko and Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Kozak agreed on a roadmap of technical measures to replace the oil containing organic chlorides oil in the Belarusian part of the Druzhba pipeline with clean oil and resume oil transit to the west," the company said, as quoted the BelTA agency.
The company also noted that, according to the plans, the parties will start paper work and practical implementation of the roadmap from May 24.
The representatives of Belneftekhim and Russia’s Energy Ministry also attended the talks.
Druzhba pipeline incident
On April 19, Belarusian concern Belneftekhim reported a sharp deterioration of the quality of the Russian oil running through the Druzhba oil pipeline and subsequently informed pipeline operators from other countries about the situation. The content of organochloride compounds in oil was dozens of times above the limit value, the company said.
On April 24, Belarus stopped the transit of contaminated Russian oil to Europe. Both Belarusian refineries - Mozyr Refinery and Naftan reported on the threat of equipment damage and reduced refining volumes by almost 50%. They also had to suspend the export of light petroleum products to Ukraine, Poland and the Baltic countries.
The source of pollution was found on the Samara-Unecha stretch of the pipeline. The Russian authorities promised to solve the problem with the oil contamination as soon as possible.
Good quality oil was delivered to the border of Belarus through the Druzhba pipeline on May 2, and at the Mozyr line operations control station on May 4.