Vilnius has proposals for Minsk on oil and gas supplies

Lithuanian Foreign Minister Linas Linkevičius. Photo

Lithuania can offer Belarus an alternative to oil and gas imports from Russia, Lithuanian Foreign Minister Linas Linkevičius said, BNS reports.

The statement was made by the Lithuanian Foreign Minister shortly after it was confirmed that Belarus would import oil from Norway through the port of Klaipeda and with the help of the Lithuanian Railway.

According to Linkiavičius, he planned to discuss energy supply issues during a planned visit to Minsk in early February.

The minister also noted that gas problems could have been considered.

The Belarusian Oil Company (BOC) bought a shipment of Norwegian Johan Sverdrup oil with delivery to the Lithuanian port of Klaipeda. The oil will be delivered to Navapolatsk Refinery by rail.

Delivery of oil from Klaipeda to the Navapolatsk Refinery may cost Minsk considerably more than imports by pipeline — transshipment and transportation to the refinery by rail will cost more than $20 per ton. On January 1, Russia stopped oil supplies, after which Belarus refused to export oil products in order to meet domestic needs. The Belneftekhim concern claimed that the reserves would be enough for about 20 days.

Alyaksandr Lukashenka instructed officials to get oil from other countries. On January 14, Deputy Prime Minister of Belarus Dzmitry Krutoy said that the Belarusian Oil Company (BOC) had sent out commercial proposals for the purchase of oil to Poland, the Baltic States, Ukraine, Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan.