Updated at 11:50,16-10-2017

New oil transportation fees extended indefinitely

Alyaksey ARESHKA, Naviny.by

New oil transportation fees extended indefinitely
The Belarusian Ministry of Antimonopoly Regulation and Trade has extended indefinitely the new fees to be applied to the transportation of Russian crude oil through the territory of Belarus starting next month.

The Belarusian government earlier directed that the new fees would be in effect between February 1 and March 31, 2017.

The fees applied by Belarus' pipeline operators Homyeltransnafta Druzhba and Polatsktransnafta Druzhba will rise by 7.7 and 11.76 percent, respectively, on February 1.

Belarus initially wanted to raise the fees by more than 20 percent but Russia’s oil pipeline monopoly Transneft managed to secure a lower fee hike through talks.

In late September 2016, the Belarusian government issued a directive ordering that the fees for the pipeline transportation of Russian crude oil through the territory of Belarus be raised by 50 percent on October 11.

The decision, seen as Minsk's response to Russia's move to cut oil exports to Belarus, was canceled days later, as the two countries appeared to have reached a deal to resolve their oil and gas dispute.

However, the deal later stalled and the countries remain locked in the dispute.