The drop in oil products output in Belarus is caused by the problem of sales of Belarusian fuel in Russian market.
This is how an economist Barys Zhaliba commented for the charter97.org web-site on the drop of the output in Belarusian petrochemicals in the first quarter of 2013.
"I think, it is a temporary thing, since there is an agreement that in the third quarter 5.25 million tons of Russian oil will be shipped. Shipments are ensured for three quarters. If there is any significant reason, then it is, for the most part, internal. It means that Belarusian refineries or one of them decreased the output. But I will say it again, the shipments are ensured, and it is the main factor", - the economist noted.
At the same time he added that if it the matter of sales, then it may be caused by marketing problems.
"Oil products from Belarus are mainly exported to the West and partly to the East. There is a problem in Russian with the sales of Belarusian fuel. The thing is that Russian authorities demanded that we follow the obligations on oil products shipment. Despite that we underfulfilled them last year. There was a deficiency of high quality fuel. Our refineries produce fuel, which suits the standards Euro 3 and 4, which are now being established in the Russian Federation. And from the beginning of this year Belarus started fulfilling its obligations, This fuel is sold on St. Petersburg commodity market on the competition basis, but as for today the fuel market is overfilled and supply surpasses demand. Our oil products are much cheaper and of higher quality, because Belarus upgraded the refineries and Russia did not. It is obvious that common consumers are satisfied, but it is very unprofitable for producers", - Barys Zhaliba summarized.
We would remind that the largest decrease was observed in the output of oil products and chemical industry in Belarus in the first quarter of 2013 – by 21% and 16.2% compared to the similar period in 2012 respectively.
We would also note that Belarusian authorities have not yet managed to reach an agreement over the volume of oil imports from Russia in 2013. The shipments volume has only been agreed for three quarters of the year. The Belarusian party requests 23 million tons of oil in 2013, the Russian side only claimed the readiness to deliver 18.5 million, considering the necessity to ensure the load of the BTS-2 pipeline.