Russia calculates losses on solvents double-dealing

The losses of the Russian state budget amount to appr. $2.5 bn, Energy Minister Alexander Novak said in his interview to business daily Vedomosti.
According to the Minister, “Moscow and Minsk are actively negotiating” the balance of oil deliveries for the next year after the recent conflict caused by shadow export of Belarusian solvents made of Russian oil.
“The Belarusian side calls for 23 mln tons of oil deliveries for the next year. The balance has reached $21.5 mln this year, i.e. they want more oil to be processed at their oil-refining enterprises. It is natural that they do not need such amount of oil for home consumption,” the Russian minister stressed.
Indeed, Belarus needs only 6 mln tons of oil per year, and Moscow insists on returning oil products within annual balances. The top official hopes that Belarusian petrochemicals produced of excessive imported oil will be sold at the Russian market. It is clear that official Minsk is underwhelmed with the offer as well as with the Kremlin’s “asks” to give back at least $1.5 bn that Belarus made out of shadow export of solvents.
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